High incidence of disseminated intravascular coagulation during remission induction of adult patients with acute lymphoblastic leukemia

A. H. Sarris, S. Kempin, E. Berman, J. Michaeli, C. Little, M. Andreeff, T. Gee, D. Straus, B. Gansbacher, D. Filippa, B. Glaser, B. Clarkson

Publikation: Beitrag in FachzeitschriftArtikelBegutachtung

74 Zitate (Scopus)


We determined the incidence and complications of disseminated intravascular coagulation (DIC) at presentation and during remission induction of previously untreated adults with acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL) or de novo Philadelphia chromosome-positive ALL (PCALL) seen at Memorial Hospital between January 1, 1978 and December 31, 1989. DIC was diagnosed in the presence of (1) low fibrinogen (≤160 mg/dL), (2) prolonged prothrombin time (PT) and falling fibrinogen, or (3) prolonged PT and positive fibrin split products (FSP). L-Asparaginase was not used during remission induction. Among adequately screened patients with ALL, DIC was detected in 7 of 58 (12%) before initiation of chemotherapy and in 35 of 45 (78%) during remission induction. DIC was not simply the result of infection because clinical and laboratory signs of infection were absent in 16 patients, whereas only 2 of the 22 febrile patients with DIC had positive cultures. Among the 38 patients with DIC at presentation or during remission induction, serious complications were seen in 13 in temporal association with DIC (pulmonary embolus in one, sagittal sinus thrombosis in three, and serious hemorrhage in nine) and were major factors in the deaths of three patients. Among the 10 patients with thorough screening but no evidence of DIC there was only one hemorrhage during the same time interval. In patients with PCALL, DIC was detected in 9% at presentation and in 80% during remission induction. We conclude that DIC is rare at presentation but common during remission induction of adult ALL and PCALL and may be associated with significant thrombotic and hemorrhagic complications. We suggest daily screening for DIC during the first 14 days of remission induction. The treatment of DIC in ALL and PCALL should be a subject of future clinical studies.

Seiten (von - bis)1305-1310
PublikationsstatusVeröffentlicht - 1 März 1992
Extern publiziertJa


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