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Preventing dangerous blood clots in COVID-19 patients


June 26, 2020

“We know patients with COVID-19 are at higher risk of blood clots, which is why we are looking at ways to protect them,” - Dr. Lana Castellucci,Researchers at The Ottawa Hospital are exploring more than 50 research projects to support the world-wide effort to find better ways to treat and prevent COVID-19.

The Ottawa Hospital Foundation’s COVID-19 Emergency Response Fund is providing seed funding for a number of these projects, including a study led by Drs. Lana Castellucci and Marc Carrier that aims to prevent dangerous blood clots in COVID-19 patients.

Drs. Lana CastellucciMarc Carrier and colleagues are contributing to an international clinical trial to find out whether a high dose of blood thinner can prevent dangerous blood clots in hospitalized COVID-19 patients.

 About 60 percent of these patients develop blood clots, which can be deadly if they travel to the lungs. Not only can blood thinners prevent clots, there is some evidence that they may also alter the course of a COVID-19 infection by interfering with the ability of the virus to latch onto and invade human cells.

 Patients hospitalized with COVID-19 already receive a low dose of blood thinner as part of their normal care. The researchers will test whether a higher dose can reduce death, transfer to intensive care or the need for mechanical ventilation.

 The team will also look at how the treatment affects blood clots and major bleeding. This study will immediately impact the clinical care of patients with severe COVID-19 in 13 sites across Canada as well as at sites in the United States and Europe.

Research team at The Ottawa Hospital/uOttawa: Drs. Lana Castellucci, Phil Wells, Grégoire Le Gal, Lisa Duffett, Aurélien Delluc

External Co-Principal Investigators: Drs. Michelle Sholzberg, Peter Jüni (St. Michael’s Hospital), Mary Cushman (University of Vermont)

Quote: “We know patients with COVID-19 are at higher risk of blood clots, which is why we are looking at ways to protect them,” - Dr. Lana Castellucciassociate scientist at The Ottawa Hospital and assistant professor at the University of Ottawa.

The Ottawa Hospital is a leading academic health, research and learning hospital proudly affiliated with the University of Ottawa.   

Media Contact 

Amelia Buchanan
Senior Communication Specialist
Ottawa Hospital Research Institute
Office: 613-798-5555 x 73687
Cell: 613-297-8315
ambuchanan@ohri.ca