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Venous thromboembolism in Asia – an unrecognised and under-treated problem?
18 March 2011
Accepted after major revision: 29 June 2011
29 November 2017 (online)
Venous thromboembolism (VTE) has been perceived for a long time to be less common in Asian populations, particularly in the Far East, than in Western populations. Generally, thromboprophylaxis is not implemented as frequently as it should be in high-risk patients. However, recent prospective studies undertaken in Asian countries have demonstrated higher rates of VTE after major surgery and in medical wards, approaching those observed in Western populations. Risk factors for VTE are not different in Asian patients from those of Western patients with the exception of thrombophilic mutations. Deficiencies of the natural anticoagulants (protein S, protein C, and antithrombin) are the predominant thrombophilias in Asia whereas factor V Leiden and prothrombin G20210A gene mutation are not found or rarely reported. Further large well-designed clinical studies are needed to evaluate the magnitude of the risk of VTE and the appropriate use of thromboprophylaxis in different clinical situations.
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