Initial Experience with Apixaban for Extended Venous Thromboembolism Prophylaxis After Radical Cystectomy


Patients who undergo radical cystectomy (RC) are at elevated risk of venous thromboembolism and associated morbidity and mortality. Guidelines recommend extended thromboprophylaxis (ETP), typically with heparins, but adherence is low. Outside urology, low-dose apixaban has been used for postoperative ETP with success. We describe our first experiences with low-dose apixaban for ETP after RC for bladder cancer. In our sample of 72 patients who underwent RC for cancer and subsequently received apixaban 2.5 mg twice daily for ETP, there were no symptomatic thromboembolic events and no major bleeding events. Other complication rates were in line with historical reports. Our experience with apixaban 2.5 mg twice daily for ETP after RC demonstrates safety and potential efficacy. A transition from injectable to oral thromboprophylaxis has the potential to improve adherence and patient satisfaction, while allowing the possibility of further extending prophylaxis beyond 28 d, which may be beneficial in selected patients. Further evaluation of apixaban for thromboprophylaxis in urologic cancer surgery is warranted.

European Urology Focus

This is the first paper (to our knowledge) to evaluate the use of low dose apixaban for extended thromboprophylaxis after urological surgery. We studied early outcomes in 72 patients at the University of Missouri and St. Louis University. There were no major bleeding events and no symptomatic thrombotic events.