It is well-established practice to use thromboprophylaxis for patients undergoing surgical procedures due to their moderate to high risk of incidence of venous thromboembolic disease (VTE). However, many patients hospitalised for medical diagnoses also have a moderate to high incidence of VTE. This is due to several factors related to the patient type as well as disease specific factors. The purpose of this review is to summarise the risk of VTE in different subgroups of medical disease. The risk however, is not the same for all types of medical patients and thus the method and frequency of prophylaxis should be stratified according to patient risk. There continues to be exciting developments in the field of thromboprophylaxis, with the use of new anticoagulants in clinical trials involving medical patients. The safety and effectiveness of such pharmaceutical agents are described.
Keywords: Thromboprophylaxis, risk stratification, pulmonary embolism, deep vein thrombosis
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