VTE in Children (bsh 2011)



Annual incidence: 1 per 100,000 children

>90% 2o to medical/surgical risk factors

Bimodal age distribution: Neonates & adolescents


Diagnostic Imaging



Lower limb: USS and repeat after 1 week if first scan normal

Blocked line: CXR, linogram +/- MRV

Central Vein: Contrast MRV (alt: CT)



VQ if CXR normal

CT if VQ non-diagnostic (alt: MRA)


Cerebral Venous Thrombosis

Urgent T2* MRI and MRV (alt: Pre- and Post- contrast CT)

Conventional angiography if MRI non-diagnostic


Laboratory Investigation


FBC, U&E and PT/APTT for safety of anticoagulation

Antiphospholipid antibodies if unprovoked —> long term AC if positive

Protein C and S only if purpura fulminans

Antithrombin only if early onset of spontaneous thrombotic events


Do not test D-dimer

Do not test heritable thrombophilias, consequence of a positive result not clear





LMWH followed by warfarin (INR 2.5), or continuous LMWH

  • 3 months if provoked

  • 6 months if idiopathic

  • Long term if Antiphospholipid antibodies or recurrent VTE

Consider thrombolysis if extensive clot

Remove lines 2-4 days after start LMWH

IVC filter only if AC contraindicated


Cerebral Venous Thrombosis

LMWH or UFH if small, or no, intracranial haemorrhage

  • 3 months if provoked and trigger has resolved. Re-image at end of treatment

  • 6 months if idiopathic. Re-image at end of treatment

  • Long-term if risk factors persist

No AC if haemorrhage is intraventricular or causing mass effect

  • If no AC —> re-image to look for clot extension


Physical prophylaxis in older children who are at risk of VTE

LMWH prophylaxis if multiple risk factors

No prophylaxis for lines, but avoiding siting in femoral or subclavian veins.


UFH Dosing

Loading – 75 iu/kg over 10 minutes

Then - <1 year olds 28 iu/kg/hr, >1 year olds 20 iu/kg/hour


Dalteparin Dosing 

200 u/kg OD or 100 u/kg BD

50% larger dose is <8 weeks old or weigh <5 kg due to low antithrombin levels

Prophylactic dose is half the treatment dose


Target Anti-Xa: 0.5-1.0 for treatment, 0.1-0.4 for prophylaxis



2016 review article reports trials underway for all four DOACs but currently too early to draw a conclusion that they are appropriate to use in paediatic patients