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Clinical Chemistry and Laboratory Medicine (CCLM)

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Age-associated developmental changes in the activated partial thromboplastin time (APTT) and causes of prolonged APTT values in healthy Chinese children

Jianxin Li1, 2 / Xin Lai2 / Cunliang Yan2 / Anping Xu2 / Liping Nie2 / Yu Zhou2 / Chaoyu Liao2 / Hanyun Ren1

1Department of Hematology, Peking University First Hospital, Beijing, P.R. China

2Department of Laboratory Medicine, Peking University Shenzhen Hospital, Shenzhen, P.R. China

Corresponding author: Prof. Hanyun Ren, MD, PhD, Department of Hematology, Peking University First Hospital, No. 8, Xishiku Street, Beijing, 100034, China Phone: +86-10-66551122-5082, Fax: +86-10-66551811,

Citation Information: Clinical Chemistry and Laboratory Medicine. Volume 47, Issue 12, Pages 1531–1537, ISSN (Online) 1437-4331, ISSN (Print) 1434-6621, DOI: 10.1515/CCLM.2009.339, November 2009

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Background: The concept of developmental hemostasis has been universally accepted. Physiological reference ranges for coagulation tests are available for infants and children of different ages. However, on Oriental children they are rare.

Methods: Results of preoperative activated partial thromboplastin time (APTT) in neonates, infants, children aged 1–18 years and adults with minor elective surgery in a university affiliated hospital were reviewed retrospectively. Plasma activity of factors VIII, IX, XI, XII (FVIII:C, FIX:C, FXI:C, FXII:C) and lupus anticoagulants (LAC) in 47 children with prolonged APTT and 34 adult controls were measured to investigate the causes of prolongation.

Results: Compared with adults, APTT values were prolonged significantly and were age-dependent in children, especially in neonates and infants aged 1–6 months. Mean values for FXII:C and FIX:C in children with prolonged APTT values were significantly lower than those in adults (p<0.001). Prolonged APTT values correlated negatively with FXII:C and FIX:C, and weakly with the LAC Screen ratio (LAC-SR) (r0.01=−0.808, –0.705 and 0.372, p=0.000, 0.000 and 0.001, respectively). There was weak negative correlation between FXII:C and LAC-SR (r0.01=−0.277, p=0.012). No significant correlation was seen between prolonged APTT values and FVIII:C or FXI:C.

Conclusions: APTT values change dynamically with age during childhood and display a distinct pattern of evolution in children. Lower values of FXII:C and FIX:C, and presence of LAC contribute to the prolongation of APTT values in Chinese children.

Clin Chem Lab Med 2009;47:1531–7.

Keywords: activated partial thromboplastin time; blood coagulation factor; developmental hemostasis; lupus anticoagulants

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