What is the role of a coagulation panel prior to a cesarean delivery (C-section)?

Updated: Dec 14, 2018
  • Author: Hedwige Saint Louis, MD, MPH, FACOG; Chief Editor: Christine Isaacs, MD  more...
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Occasionally, a coagulation profile is necessary. In patients with thrombocytopenia, a history of a bleeding disorder, preeclampsia, or a condition with suspected disseminated intravascular coagulation (DIC), whether consumptive or secondary to thromboplastin release, a CBC and coagulation studies (including prothrombin time [PT], activated partial thromboplastin time [aPTT], and fibrinogen) may be ordered to assist the attending anesthesiologist in determining the safety of attempting regional anesthesia with an epidural or spinal procedure.

Most known thrombophilias, hemophilias, or other medical conditions that could compromise cardiac, circulatory, or respiratory function during surgery should be addressed with the anesthesiologist before admission for cesarean delivery. This includes patients with morbid obesity in which airway access as well as vascular access can be extremely challenging.

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