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Background According to the International Society on Thrombosis and Haemostasis (ISTH), intramuscular hematoma without other severity criteria is not considered a major bleeding. Objectives: In a large cohort of reversed vitamin K antagonist (VKA) patients admitted to the emergency unit for muscular hematoma, we assess frequency, severity, and anticoagulation management based on whether ISTH criteria were met or not. Materials and methods We performed a retrospective single-center study involving patients admitted to an emergency unit for VKA-induced intramuscular hematoma whose bleeding was reversed with prothrombin complex concentrates. Results During the study period, 631 VKA-induced bleeding events occurred in our emergency unit, of which 73 (11.6%) were intramuscular hematomas and half met ISTH criteria. The mean age was 75.5 years (95% CI = 72.6–78.3). Admission blood tests showed that patients with ISTH criteria had higher international normalized ratio (7.0 ± 4.6 vs. 4.1 ± 3.0, p = 0.002) and lower hemoglobin (8.1 ± 1.8 vs. 11.9 ± 2.2, p < 0.001) than those without. Patients with ISTH criteria were more likely to have intramuscular hematoma in the iliopsoas, gluteal, and pectoral muscles than those without. Interestingly, two-thirds of rectus sheath hematomas involved patients without ISTH criteria. However, patients with or without ISTH criteria exhibited a similar hospitalization duration and rate of re-bleeding. Conclusion We showed that half of the patients admitted with intramuscular hematoma could not be qualified as having ISTH-criteria major bleeding. Interestingly, these patients displayed a similar hospitalization duration and rate of re-bleeding to those with ISTH-criteria major bleeding.


School of Exercise Science

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