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Updated NICE guidance will help people in hospital most at risk of VTE

Updated NICE guidance will help people in hospital most at risk of VTE

Publication date: Wednesday, 04 April 2018
Contributor(s): Jeremy Bray

Updated guidance on venous thromboembolism (VTE) from NICE aims to reduce the risk of VTE and deep vein thrombosis (DVT) in people aged 16 and over in hospital.

The updated guideline‘Venous thromboembolism in over 16s: reducing the risk of hospital-acquired deep vein thrombosis or pulmonary embolism’ aims to help healthcare professionals identify people most at risk of VTE and describes treatments and interventions that can be used. The National Guideline Centre (NGC), which is hosted by the Royal College of Physicians (RCP), has developed the new guideline for NICE in order to update the previous recommendations (CG92) published in 2010.

The recommendations cover people who are most at risk of VTE, including:

  • patients discharged from hospital with lower limb devices such as plaster casts and braces
  • patients attending hospital for day procedures, including cancer treatment and surgery
  • pregnant women admitted to hospital or a midwife-led unit including up to 6 weeks after giving birth.

As part of a hospital discharge plan, the guideline recommends that patients and their family members or carers are given verbal and written information on:

  • the signs and symptoms of deep vein thrombosis (DVT) and pulmonary embolism
  • how people can reduce their risk of VTE (such as keeping well hydrated and, if possible, exercising and becoming more mobile)
  • the importance of seeking help if DVT, pulmonary embolism or other adverse events are suspected.

Some new recommendations in the updated NG89 guidelines

  • Assess all medical patients to identify the risk of VTE and bleeding using a tool published by a national UK body, professional network or peer-reviewed journal. The most commonly used risk assessment tool for medical patients is the Department of Health VTE risk assessment tool
  • Consider VTE prophylaxis for people at increased risk of VTE who are interrupting anticoagulant therapy
  • Ensure that people who are discharged with pharmacological and/or mechanical VTE prophylaxis are able to use it correctly, or have arrangements made for someone to be available who will be able to help them.
  • Notify the person's GP if the person has been discharged with pharmacological and/or mechanical VTE prophylaxis to be used at home.

More information

The full guidance and recommendations are available at: https://www.nice.org.uk/guidance/ng89

Further details can be found at: https://www.rcplondon.ac.uk/news/updated-nice-guidance-will-help-people-hospital-most-risk-vte

Topics covered:
Category: Have You Heard
Edition: Volume 3, Number 4, BJPCN Online 2018
Contributor(s): Jeremy Bray

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