Over the past two to three years there have been some small studies that have indicated that the use of concomitant anticoagulants along with docetaxel (chemotherapy) may improve overall survival

The most recent examination of this issue was performed by a team led by Emmanuel S. Antonarakis, MD, of Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore.  They analyzed data from 247 men with mCRPC who received first-line docetaxel chemotherapy. Of these, 29 (11.7%) received therapeutic anticoagulation—either low-molecular-weight heparin (LMWH) or warfarin—for the treatment of venous thromboembolism.

The median survival for the men receiving anticoagulation therapy was 20.9 months compared with 17.1 months in the controls.  This proved to be a statistically significant difference in survival, according to a paper published online ahead of print in Clinical Genitourinary Cancer.

After the research team adjusted for multiple potential confounders, anticoagulant use was associated with a significant 51% decreased risk of death.

When the researchers considered each anticoagulant separately, they found that LMWH use was associated with a significant 52% decreased risk of death, but warfarin use had no effect on survival.


Joel T Nowak, M.A., M.S.W.