The role of thromboelastometry in the assessment and treatment of coagulopathy in liver transplant patients
Perioperative monitoring of coagulation is vital to assess bleeding risks, diagnose deficiencies associated with hemorrhage, and guide hemostatic therapy in major surgical procedures, such as liver transplantation. Routine static tests demand long turnaround time and do not assess platelet function; they are determined on plasma at a standard temperature of 37°C; hence these tests are ill-suited for intraoperative use. In contrast, methods which evaluate the viscoelastic properties of whole blood, such as thromboelastogram and rotational thromboelastometry, provide rapid qualitative coagulation assessment and appropriate guidance for transfusion therapy. These are promising tools for the assessment and treatment of hyper- and hypocoagulable states associated with bleeding in liver transplantation. When combined with traditional tests and objective assessment of the surgical field, this information provides ideal guidance for transfusion strategies, with potential improvement of patient outcomes.