The American Heart Association (AHA) and the International Society on Thrombosis and Haemostasis (ISTH) issued a joint scientific statement July 8 outlining research priorities in the field of venous thromboembolism (VTE).
“At the fundamental research level (T0), researchers need to identify pathobiological causative mechanisms for the 50% of patients with unprovoked [VTE] and to better understand mechanisms that differentiate hemostasis from thrombosis,” the statement reads.
Written by first-named author Mary Cushman, MD, medical director of the Thrombosis and Hemostasis Program at the University of Vermont Medical Center in Burlington, Vermont, et al, it was issued on behalf of the American Heart Association Council on Peripheral Vascular Disease; Council on Arteriosclerosis, Thrombosis and Vascular Biology; Council on Cardiovascular and Stroke Nursing; Council on Clinical Cardiology; Council on Epidemiology and Prevention; and the International Society on Thrombosis and Haemostasis. It was co-published in both Circulation and Research and Practice in Thrombosis and Haemostasis.
Setting, the scene, the authors write: “[VTE] is a major cause of morbidity and mortality. The impact of the U.S. Surgeon General’s ‘The Surgeon General’s Call to Action to Prevent Deep Vein Thrombosis and Pulmonary Embolism’ in 2008 has been lower than expected given the public health impact of this disease. This scientific statement highlights future research priorities in [VTE], developed by experts and a crowdsourcing survey across 16 scientific organizations.”
The statement goes on to encourage a multidisciplinary approach to tackle VTE.
It continues: “At the human level (T1), new methods for diagnosing, treating, and preventing venous thromboembolism will allow tailoring of diagnostic and therapeutic approaches to individuals.
“At the patient level (T2), research efforts are required to understand how foundational evidence impacts care of patients (e.g., biomarkers). New treatments, such as catheter-based therapies, require further testing to identify which patients are most likely to experience benefit.
“At the practice level (T3), translating evidence into practice remains challenging. Areas of overuse and underuse will require evidence-based tools to improve care delivery. At the community and population level (T4), public awareness campaigns need thorough impact assessment.
“Large population-based cohort studies can elucidate the biological and environmental underpinnings of venous thromboembolism and its complications. To achieve these goals, funding agencies and training programs must support a new generation of scientists and clinicians who work in multidisciplinary teams to solve the pressing public health problem of venous thromboembolism.”
Data supplements accompanying the statement are available here.