Although the mortality from acromegaly is due in most cases to an increased cardiovascular risk, no study has globally evaluated the haemostatic balance in acromegaly to ascertain the presence of hypercoagulability. We endeavoured to assess the overall coagulation profile in patients with acromegaly using both traditional and global coagulation assays.
Consecutive outpatients with a diagnosis of acromegaly were enrolled and matched with healthy subjects. Whole blood thromboelastometry and impedance aggregometry, procoagulant, anticoagulant and fibrinolytic factors, as well as thrombin-generation assay and circulating endothelium-derived microvesicles were measured.
Forty patients (M/F 14/26, median age 59 years) with either new diagnosis (naïve, 14 cases) or treated acromegaly (26 cases) were enrolled in this study. Median time from diagnosis was 11 years. Levels of factor VIII and fibrinogen were significantly higher in acromegalic patients vs. controls (p = 0.029 and < 0.003, respectively). Overall, thromboelastometry parameters showed a faster coagulation formation with a more stable clot. Acromegaly patients showed significantly higher endogenous thrombin potential [ETP] and thrombin peak compared to controls (p = 0.016 and p < 0.001, respectively). ETP remained significantly higher (p < 0.001) when thrombomodulin was added. Endothelial-derived microvesicles were significantly higher in acromegaly patients than controls (52 [40.5–67] MVs/µL and 30 [18–80] MVs/µL, p = 0.03). Patients with untreated (naïve) acromegaly showed significantly reduced ETP with and without thrombomodulin vs. patients with treated acromegaly (p = 0.01).
Hypercoagulability in acromegaly is mainly due to higher levels of fibrinogen, factor VIII and thrombin generation, and appears to be more linked to the chronic phase of the disease.
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The authors would like to thank M. Fadin, G. Saggiorato, P. Zerbinati, and F. Sartorello for coagulation and fibrinolytic factors analyses. The authors are indebted to F. Nde for English grammar revision.
This research received no specific grant from any funding agency in the public, commercial or not-for-profit sectors.
Conflict of interest
The authors disclose no potential conflicts of interest.
The research conforms to the principles of the Declaration of Helsinki, revised in 2000. Padua University Hospital’s Ethics Committee approved the protocol.
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Campello, E., Marobin, M., Barbot, M. et al. The haemostatic system in acromegaly: a single-centre case–control study. J Endocrinol Invest 43, 1009–1018 (2020). https://doi.org/10.1007/s40618-020-01186-9
- Endocrine disorders
- Thrombin generation