There is a well-known close relationship between cancer and the haemostatic system. Plasma D-dimer (DD) is a marker of fibrin generation and lysis.
In the clinical practice, its main use is in the diagnostic algorithms of venous thromboembolism (VTE), and it is one of the diagnostic criteria of disseminated intravacular coagulation. In patients with cancer, the specificity of DD is lower than in the general population, reducing its usefulness.
However, there is a growing evidence that points out a possible application of DD in the clinical management of cancer patients as a predictor of VTE, marker of hidden cancer in patients with idiopathic VTE, or even as an independent prognostic factor of response to chemotherapy and survival.
In this review, the current evidence supporting the use of DD in cancer patients is critically exposed and discussed.
CITA DEL ARTÍCULO Med Clin (Barc). 2010 Nov 11