Clinical application of the PFA-100

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173 Citations (Scopus)


The PFA-100 (platelet function analyzer) is a relatively new tool for the investigation of primary hemostasis. Recent studies have shown its utility as a screening tool for investigating possible von Willebrand disorder (VWD) and various platelet disorders. More recently, the PFA-100 has been shown to be valuable in monitoring desmopressin acetate (DDAVP) therapy in both VWD and platelet disorders. The PFA-100 has also been evaluated in many other studies for its utility in assessing drug effects, for potential monitoring of antiplatelet medication (including aspirin), or for evaluation of overall primary hemostasis in various clinical disorders or during surgical procedures. This article reviews current findings and highlights the benefits and limitations of the clinical utility of the PFA-100. Ultimately, the greatest strengths of the PFA-100 are its simplicity of use and excellent sensitivity to particular hemostatic disturbances such as VWD, platelet disorders, and platelet-affecting medication. However, because it is thus a global test system, this also creates a significant limitation because the PFA-100 is not specific for, nor predictive of, any particular disorder. However, used appropriately, the PFA-100 can be considered a worthwhile addition to any hemostasis laboratory involved in the diagnosis or therapeutic monitoring of bleeding disorders and potentially of antiplatelet medication. This review should be valuable to both hemostasis scientists and clinical specialists.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)407-415
Number of pages9
JournalCurrent Opinion in Hematology
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - Sept 2002


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