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10 January 2023 : Case report  USA

[In Press] A 36-Year-Old Woman with Acute Liver Failure Following Acetaminophen Overdose, Raised INR of 8.7, and Normal Blood Viscosity Measured by Rotational Thromboelastometry (ROTEM)

Unusual clinical course, Challenging differential diagnosis, Diagnostic / therapeutic accidents, Unusual setting of medical care

Uzung Yoon1ABCDEF, Manny Lai1E, Tho Nguyen1EF, Elia Elia1E

DOI: 10.12659/AJCR.938500

Am J Case Rep In Press; DOI: 10.12659/AJCR.938500  

Available online: 2023-01-10, In Press, Corrected Proof

Publication in the "In-Press" formula aims at speeding up the public availability of the pending manuscript while waiting for the final publication. The assigned DOI number is active and citable. The availability of the article in the Medline, PubMed and PMC databases as well as Web of Science will be obtained after the final publication according to the journal schedule


Fulminant hepatic failure (FHF) is commonly associated with elevated prothrombin time (PT) and international normalized ratio (INR). There is a commensurate decline in pro- and anti-hemostatic factors, and hemostatic function is rebalanced, not reflected in INR. This report presents the case of a 36-year-old woman with FHF following acetaminophen overdose, an increased INR above 8.7, and normal blood viscosity measured by rotational thromboelastometry (ROTEM).
A 36-year-old woman presented with FHF following an acetaminophen overdose. On arrival, she was lethargic but arousable and followed commands. Her King’s College Criteria for acetaminophen toxicity was 2 and her MELD score was 36. Her INR was unmeasurably high (>8.7). To evaluate whole-blood coagulation, a ROTEM analysis was performed. All parameters (CT, CFT, alpha-angle, A10, MCF) of the NATEM were within reference range. Despite the normal ROTEM, spontaneous bleeding was a concern. The patient received 5 units of cryoprecipitate and 9 units of FFP prior to a central venous line placement. She was started on molecular adsorbent recirculating system and continuous veno-venous hemodialysis, but died on day 7.
Patients with FHF can have normal whole-blood coagulation based on ROTEM even if INR levels are unmeasurably high. Viscoelastic tests such as ROTEM, which assesses whole-blood coagulation properties, are preferrable for coagulation monitoring in these patients. Blood product transfusion to correct coagulation abnormality, like FFP and cryoprecipitate, may be used based on the result of viscoelastic testing over conventional coagulation testing.

Keywords: Blood Coagulation; Liver Transplantation

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American Journal of Case Reports eISSN: 1941-5923
American Journal of Case Reports eISSN: 1941-5923