Recombinant Factor VIIa Treatment of Severe Bleeding in Cardiac Surgery Patients: A Retrospective Analysis of Dosing, Efficacy, and Safety Outcomes

Faisal Masud, Fariedeh Bostan, Elisa Chi, Steven E. Pass, Hany Samir, Karla Stuebing, Michael G. Liebl

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

29 Scopus citations


Objective: To describe rFVIIa dosing and clinical outcomes in cardiovascular surgery patients with refractory bleeding. Design: Retrospective chart review of patients receiving rFVIIa from January 1, 2004 to September 30, 2005, in the cardiovascular surgery setting. Setting: Tertiary care, private teaching hospital. Participants: Ninety-three patients who received rFVIIa after cardiovascular surgery for the management of refractory bleeding. Interventions: None. Measures and Main Results: Patients received an average of 7.6 ± 6.8 units of red blood cells (RBCs) before rFVIIa dosing (mean dose, 56.2 ± 26.5 μg/kg). Median and 25th and 75th quartile blood product consumption was significantly reduced 6 hours after rFVIIa versus 6 hours before (RBCs, -3 units, [-1, -7]; cryoprecipitate, -7.5 units [0, -20]; platelet, -3 units [-1, -4]; fresh frozen plasma, -4 units [-2, -7]). Repeated rFVIIa dosing occurred in 10% of patients, with 8 (8.6%) and 2 (2.25%) patients receiving second and third doses, respectively. Subgroup analysis of each rFVIIa dosing quartile >30 μg/kg showed a significant reduction in RBCs; however, no significant differences were found in the magnitude of RBC reduction or percent of patients requiring massive transfusion among the quartiles. No adverse thrombotic episodes were noted, and the observed mortality (22.6%) was not attributed to rFVIIa therapy. Conclusions: rFVIIa effectively reduces blood product use in cardiovascular surgery patients having massive blood loss. Although the optimal dose of rFVIIa for use in cardiovascular surgery remains undetermined, these data provide evidence that dosing regimens using <90 μg/kg are effective in this population and may provide guidance for centers establishing standardized protocols for rFVIIa use in cardiovascular surgery patients.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)28-33
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Cardiothoracic and Vascular Anesthesia
Issue number1
StatePublished - Feb 2009


  • NovoSeven
  • cardiac surgery
  • dosing
  • factor VIIa
  • hemorrhage
  • hemostasis

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine
  • Anesthesiology and Pain Medicine


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