Sunday, June 22, 2014

FDIC - Frightening Disseminated Intravascular Coagulation

DIC is a paradoxical event in any patient, particularly in pregnancy. Disseminated (everywhere in the body), Intravascular (in the blood vessels), Coagulation (clotting).

 DIC It is one of the most dangerous conditions that we encounter in the mother/baby realm during pregnancy and can threaten both mother and fetus. It is an extremely paradoxical event; A ballet between clotting and bleeding; Between life and death.

 A "trigger" stimulates activation of the clotting cascade and clotting throughout the body. This activation results in widespread thrombosis (clots). All this clotting leads to depletion of the raw materials of the clot...platelets and coagulation factors. The end result of this process is bleeding into many areas and organs and, ultimately, multi organ failure including fetal demise. In most cases in the pregnant patient, this demands emergency c-section with long, exhaustive NICU stays for the babies who survive.

In a word, frightening.

DIC Cascade