Blood clots are a serious side effect of COVID-19, which is why so many clinicians turn to anticoagulation therapies. However, according to a new study published in Thrombosis Research, choosing a treatment plan that is too aggressive can be downright harmful.
The authors examined data from more than 400 hospitalized COVID-19 patients who were treated at a single hospital from March 15 to May 31, 2020. While 250 patients were treated with standard blood thinners, the other patients were given high-dose blood thinners.
Overall, the team found that high-dose blood thinners were not associated with any noticeable benefits. In fact, they wrote, it may even harm the patient to be treated so aggressively; death was actually more likely for patients treated with the high-dose blood thinners.
“Though we would have loved to have seen a clinical benefit to our patients from anticoagulation, our research found that higher doses of blood thinners were potentially harmful, with no clear benefits,” added co-author Karolyn Teufel, MD, also of the George Washington SMHS. “Our research highlights the challenges with treating COVID-19. So much remains unknown.”