Heparin-Induced Thrombocytopenia

  • Emily Downs
  • Svetlana Goldman
  • Surabhi Palkimas
  • Aditya M. Sharma


Heparin-induced thrombocytopenia (HIT) is an uncommon condition with grave consequences. It is a clinicopathological diagnosis which can often be complex. However, delayed diagnosis and inadequate or inappropriate treatment can lead to life- and limb-threatening outcomes. This chapter will describe the syndrome of HIT (and HITT—heparin-induced thrombocytopenia with thrombosis) as it is now known, including its history, pathophysiology, diagnostic process with the current testing paradigm, and updated treatment options for HIT.


Heparin Thrombocytopenia Heparin-induced thrombocytopenia Thrombosis 



American College of Chest Physicians


Activated clotting time


Chromogenic factor X


Cardiopulmonary bypass


Direct oral anticoagulants


Direct thrombin inhibitor


Deep vein thrombosis


Enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay


Heparin-associated thrombocytopenia


HIT Expert Probability


Heparin-induced thrombocytopenia


International normalized ratio


Inferior vena cava


Low-molecular-weight heparin


Optical density


Particle gel immunoassay


Percutaneous coronary intervention


Pulmonary embolism


Platelet factor 4


Serotonin release assay


Vitamin K antagonist


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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Emily Downs
    • 1
  • Svetlana Goldman
    • 2
  • Surabhi Palkimas
    • 2
  • Aditya M. Sharma
    • 3
  1. 1.Department of Surgery, Division of Thoracic and Cardiovascular SurgeryUniversity of Virginia Medical Center, University of VirginiaCharlottesvilleUSA
  2. 2.Department of PharmacyUniversity of Virginia Medical Center, University of VirginiaCharlottesvilleUSA
  3. 3.Department of Medicine, Cardiovascular Medicine Division, Heart and Vascular CenterUniversity of Virginia Medical Center, University of VirginiaCharlottesvilleUSA

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