International Orthopaedics

, Volume 43, Issue 10, pp 2303–2308 | Cite as

The effect of anticoagulants on venous thrombosis prevention after knee arthroscopy: a systematic review

  • Hai-Feng Huang
  • Jia-Liang Tian
  • Li Sun
  • Xian-Teng Yang
  • Yu-Kun Shen
  • Shan-Shan Li
  • Quan XieEmail author
  • Xiao-Bin TianEmail author
Original Paper



Knee arthroscopy, with its unique advantages, has become a routine surgery and is widely carried out around the world. Venous thromboembolism (VTE) after knee arthroscopy is a potentially serious complication. This article analyzes the effects of anticoagulant therapy after knee arthroscopy.


We used key words or entry terms without any limitations to search the PubMed, Embase, and Cochrane Library databases. Randomized controlled trials (RCTs) of drug prophylaxis for VTE after knee arthroscopy until November 2017 were included in our review.


This systematic review identified nine RCTs, consisting of 4290 patients, investigating drug prophylaxis in knee arthroscopy. There are three main drugs for preventing thrombosis after arthroscopic knee surgery: low-molecular-weight heparin (LMWH), rivaroxaban, and aspirin. Our study concluded that there is no difference in symptomatic VTE (excluding symptomatic distal DVT) risk during anticoagulant prophylaxis (RR, 0.98; 95% CI, 0.44–2.19; I2 value = 0%; P = 0.97). Moreover, there was a lower incidence of symptomatic distal DVT (RR, 0.16; 95% CI, 0.06–0.45; I2 value = 0%; P = 0.0005) in the anticoagulant group than in the control group.


In our study, anticoagulant therapy after knee arthroscopy was ineffective. We recommend that anticoagulants not be provided routinely after knee arthroscopy.


Venous thromboembolism Anticoagulant Knee arthroscopy 


Author contributions

Conceived and designed the article: XBT and QX. Literature search and data extraction: HFH, YKS, and XTY. Analyzed the data: HFH and SSL. Wrote the paper: HFH, JLT, and LS. All of the authors read and approved the final manuscript.

Funding information

This work was supported by grants from the National Natural Science Foundation of China (No. 81560356, No. 61264004), the Science Foundation of Guizhou Province (No. (2015) 3044), the Science and Technology Foundation of Guizhou Province (No. (2015) 2089, No. gzwjkj2018-1-040), and High-level Creative Talent Training Program in Guizhou Province of China (Grant No. [2015]4015).

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.


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Copyright information

© SICOT aisbl 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Hai-Feng Huang
    • 1
    • 2
  • Jia-Liang Tian
    • 2
  • Li Sun
    • 2
  • Xian-Teng Yang
    • 1
    • 2
  • Yu-Kun Shen
    • 2
  • Shan-Shan Li
    • 3
  • Quan Xie
    • 4
    Email author
  • Xiao-Bin Tian
    • 2
    Email author
  1. 1.Medical CollegeGuizhou UniversityGuiyangChina
  2. 2.Department of OrthopaedicsGuizhou Provincial People’s HospitalGuiyangChina
  3. 3.Department of AnesthesiologyGuizhou Provincial People’s HospitalGuiyangChina
  4. 4.College of Big Data and Information EngineeringGuizhou UniversityGuiyangChina

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