A diagnostic screening kit that measures platelet function at the point of care is being used to assess the need need for blood products and drugs in patients who bleed post-operatively.
Surgeons and anaesthetists at the Lancashire Cardiac Centre in Blackpool Victoria Hospital are using Plateletworks from HORIBA Medical as a rapid test of whether patients have enough functioning platelets to allow haemostasis.
The Plateletworks kit delivers quantitative and qualitative platelet assessments in minutes, enabling clinicians to make informed decisions at the point of care.
The kit is also enabling clinicians at the Centre to swiftly assess patients on anti-platelet therapy (such as Clopidogrel) who require urgent surgery, so that they can be operated on at the earliest safe opportunity.
Plateletworks is also being used to evaluate new techniques, such as optimisation of the perfusion process to reduce platelet loss and hence need for transfusion.
Whole blood samples can be used with the kit, saving time in sample preparation. The tests can be processed on a HORIBA Medical haematology analyser in less than five minutes.
“By using Plateletworks to rapidly assess platelet function we have noted a reduction in post-operative bleeding take backs,” said Mr Nidal Bittar, consultant cardiothoracic surgeon at the Centre.
“We have also been able to improve a patient’s journey, since we can address the cause of bleeding quickly without delay and we need only transfuse if absolutely necessary.
“Furthermore, we can protect low responders to anti-platelet therapy from risk of embolus during stent insertion procedures, for example.”
HORIBA Medical UK specialises in automated in vitro diagnostic systems for haematology, with a clinical support network of 31 professionals.