Clinically relevant bleeding in cancer patients treated for venous thromboembolism from the CATCH study

the CATCH Investigators

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

13 Scopus citations


Essentials Cancer patients receiving anticoagulants for venous thromboembolism have an elevated bleeding risk. This secondary analysis of CATCH assessed characteristics of clinically relevant bleeding (CRB). CRB occurs in 15% of cancer patients with thrombosis using therapeutic doses of anticoagulation. After multivariate analysis, risk factors for CRB were age >75 years and intracranial malignancy. Summary: Background Cancer patients with acute venous thromboembolism (VTE) receiving anticoagulant treatment have an increased bleeding risk. Objectives We performed a prespecified secondary analysis of the randomized, open-label, Phase III CATCH trial (NCT01130025) to assess the rate and sites of and the risk factors for clinically relevant bleeding (CRB). Patients/Methods Patients with active cancer and acute, symptomatic VTE received either tinzaparin 175 IU kg−1 once daily or warfarin (target International Normalized Ratio [INR] of 2.0–3.0) for 6 months. Fisher's exact test was used to screen prespecified clinical risk factors; those identified as being significantly associated with an increased risk of CRB then underwent competing risk regression analysis of time to first CRB. Results Among 900 randomized patients, 138 (15.3%) had 180 CRB events. CRB occurred in 60 patients (81 events) in the tinzaparin group and in 78 patients (99 events) in the warfarin group (hazard ratio [HR] 0.64; 95% confidence interval [CI] 0.45–0.89). Common bleeding sites were gastrointestinal (36.7%; n = 66), genitourinary (22.8%; n = 41), and nasal (10.0%; n = 18). In multivariate analysis, the risk of CRB increased with age > 75 years (HR 1.83, 95% CI 1.14–2.94) and intracranial malignancy (HR 1.97, 95% CI 1.07–3.62). In the warfarin group, 40.4% of CRB events occurred in patients with with an INR of < 3.0. A lower time in therapeutic range was associated with a higher risk of CRB. Conclusions CRB is a frequent complication in cancer patients with VTE during anticoagulant treatment, and is associated with age > 75 years and intracranial malignancy.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1069-1077
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Thrombosis and Haemostasis
Issue number6
StatePublished - Jun 2018


  • anticoagulants
  • bleeding
  • neoplasms
  • tinzaparin
  • venous thromboembolism

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Hematology


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