Age and Thrombosis: Acquired and Genetic risk factors in the Elderly


Marissa Engbers, MD, PhD student

Project managers

Prof. dr F.R. Rosendaal
Dr A. van Hylckama Vlieg

CooperationAnticoagulation clinics in Leiden and Haarlem

Background: The incidence of venous thrombosis (VT) increases with age, to 10 per 1000 per year, compared with an incidence rate of one to three persons per 1000 per year in the general population.(1,2) The cause of this steep age-gradient is as yet, unexplained.

Aims of the study
The aim of the study is to identify the conventional and age-specific risk factors of VT in the elderly. Secondary aims are to determine the quality of life and the presence of the post-thrombotic syndrome in the elderly after one year.

The AT-AGE study is a population based case-control study of VT risk factors in individuals of 70 years and older without cancer. Cases are identified at the coagulation clinics in Leiden and Haarlem, the Netherlands. Control participants are a random sample from the elderly population at 5 primary care physician practices.

Home visits in 300 consecutive cases and 300 control participants will be performed. During the home visits we collect blood samples and conduct an interview and several functional measurements. Cases will be visited for the second time after 1 year for follow up and second blood draw.

The results will give us more insight into the etiology and consequences of VT in the elderly. Specific subgroups can be identified in which prevention of thrombosis can be beneficial. Furthermore, results may lead to recommendations regarding improvement of clinical care for the elderly after a VT.

Reference List:

  1. Naess IA, Christiansen SC, Romundstad P, Cannegieter SC, Rosendaal FR, Hammerstrom J. Incidence and mortality of venous thrombosis: a population-based study. J Thromb Haemost 2007;5 692-9.
  2. Rosendaal FR, van Hylckama Vlieg A, Doggen CJM. Venous thrombosis in the elderly. J Thromb Haemost 2007;5 Suppl 1:310-7.