Objective To evaluate the role of low molecular weight heparin in COVID-19 treatment.
Design Retrospective cohort study
Setting Patients with COVID-19 pneumonia consecutively admitted to Castel San Giovanni COVID- Hospital from February 29, to April 7, 2020.
Main outcome measure Hospital mortality and safety in patients treated with low molecular weight hep- arin.
Results Of the 257 patients enrolled, 49 (19.1%) died during the hospitalization. Hospital mortality was significantly lower in patients treated with therapeutic dose of low molecular weight heparin (T-LMWH) (17/126, 13.5%), compared with patients treated with prophylactic dose (P-LMWH) (32/131, 24.4%; χ²=4.98, p = 0.02). Crude and adjusted odds ratios of mortality for patients treated with T-LMWH were OR=0.483, 95% CI 0.252-0.923 and OR=0.374, 95% CI 0.177-0.792. In a stratified analysis by ventila- tion type, the only subgroup of patients who benefited from therapeutic doses of heparin were those re- ceiving non-invasive mechanical ventilation (OR=0.099, 95% CI 0.028-0.354, p<0.001). No fatal bleed- ings were observed.
Conclusion Treatment with therapeutic doses of T-LMWH is safe and seems to reduce mortality in COVID-19 patients with pneumonia, especially among those who need non-invasive mechanical ventila- tion. We look forward to prospective studies to confirm this observation and evaluate the appropriate dose of LMWH in the treatment of COVID-19 patients.