Relationship between disease severity and D-dimer levels measured with two different methods in pulmonary embolism patients
Pulmonary embolism (PE) is diagnosed with increasing fre- quency nowadays due to advances in the diagnostic methods and the increased awareness of the disease. There is a tenden- cy to use non invasive diagnostic methods for all diseases. D-dimer is a fibrin degradation product. We aimed to detect the relationship between disease severity and the D-dimer levels measured with two different methods. We compared D-dimer levels in cases of massive vs. non-massive PE. A total of 89 patients who were diagnosed between 2006 and 2008 were included in the study. Group 1 included patients whose D-dimer levels were measured with the immunoturbidimetric polyclonal antibody method (D-dimerPLUS®), while Group 2 patients made use of the immunoturbidimetric monoclonal antibody method (InnovanceD-DIMER®). In each group, the D-dimer levels of those with massive and non-massive PE were compared, using the Mann Whitney U test. The mean age of Group 1 (25F/26M) was 56.0 ± 17.9 years, and that of Group 2 (22F/16M) was 52.9 ± 17.9 years. There was no sta- tistical difference in gender and mean age between the two groups (p > 0.05). In Group 1, the mean D-dimer level of mas- sive cases (n = 7) was 1444.9 ± 657.9 μg/L and that of non- massive PE (n = 34) was 1304.7 ± 350.5 μg/L (p > 0.05). In Group 2, the mean D-dimer level of massive cases (n = 6) was 9.7 ± 2.2 mg/L and that of non-massive PE (n = 32) was 5.9 ± 1.3 mg/L (p < 0.05). The mean D-dimer levels of massive cases as measured with the immunoturbidimetric monoclonal anti- body method were significantly higher. Pulmonary embolism patients whose D-dimer levels are higher (especially higher than 6.6 mg/L) should be considered as possibly having massive embolism. Diagnostic procedures and management can be planned according to this finding.
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