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Research Article

Prophylaxis of postoperative leg vine thrombosis by low dose subcutaneous heparin or peroperative calf muscle stimulation: a controlled clinical trial.

Br Med J 1975; 1 doi: (Published 22 March 1975) Cite this as: Br Med J 1975;1:649
  1. I L Rosenberg,
  2. M Evans,
  3. A V Pollock


    In a randomized, controlled clinical trial of two methods of preventing postoperative leg vein thrombosis patients undergoing major surgery were divided into three groups. One received intermittent electrical calf muscle stimulation during surgery, the second subcutaneous heparin calcium 5000 IU every eight hours for six days, and the third no specific prophylaxis. Leg vein thrombosis was detected by the 125-I-fibrinogen uptake test. Neither method was effective in patients undergoing open bladder or prostatic surgery. Stimulation did not reduce the incidence of leg vein thrombosis in patients with malignant disease undergoing laparotomy, but heparin calcium was highly successful in this group (P smaller than 0-001). When the laparotomy was for a benign condition, however, both heparin calcium (P smaller than 0-001) and stimulation (P smaller than 0-01) were effective.