Hamostaseologie 2022; 42(01): 054-064
DOI: 10.1055/a-1717-7663
Review Article

Thrombophilia, Thrombosis and Thromboprophylaxis in Pregnancy: For What and in Whom?

Saskia Middeldorp
1   Department of Internal Medicine, Radboud Institute of Health Sciences (RIHS), Radboud University Medical Center, Nijmegen, The Netherlands
Christiane Naue
2   Division of Hematology, Department of Medicine I, University Hospital “Carl Gustav Carus” Dresden, Dresden, Germany
Christina Köhler
2   Division of Hematology, Department of Medicine I, University Hospital “Carl Gustav Carus” Dresden, Dresden, Germany
› Author Affiliations


Compared with nonpregnant women, pregnancy carries a four- to fivefold higher risk of venous thromboembolism (VTE). Despite increasing use of heparin prophylaxis in identified high-risk patients, pulmonary embolism still is the leading cause of maternal mortality in the western world. However, evidence on optimal use of thromboprophylaxis is scarce. Thrombophilia, the hereditary or acquired tendency to develop VTE, is also thought to be associated with complications in pregnancy, such as recurrent miscarriage and preeclampsia. In this review, the current evidence on optimal thromboprophylaxis in pregnancy is discussed, focusing primarily on VTE prevention strategies but also discussing the potential to prevent recurrent pregnancy complications with heparin in pregnant women with thrombophilia.

Publication History

Received: 22 November 2021

Accepted: 08 December 2021

Article published online:
23 February 2022

© 2022. Thieme. All rights reserved.

Georg Thieme Verlag KG
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