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Why Is My Dog 's Thrombin Clot Time Increased?

Why Is My Cat 's Thrombin Clot Time Increased?

To see what normal blood and urine values are for your pet, go here

For an explanation of causes of most abnormal blood and urine tests go here

To see how tests are often grouped, go here

For an extensive list of health problems that can delay blood clotting in your pet, go here

Ron Hines DVM PhD

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Your Pet's Thrombin Clot Time - A Measure Of Bleeding Tendency

TCT, Thrombin Time,TT

This is one of a group of tests that investigate your dog or cat ’s blood clotting mechanism. You veterinarian might order it if he/she is suspicious that you pet is bleeding due to a faulty clotting mechanism. Perhaps, you and your veterinarian are faced with unexplained anemia in your dog or cat or your pet bled excessively during surgery or after an accident.

Because the clotting of blood is such a complex process (the coagulation cascade) with many different stages or steps and the interplay of many chemicals and cells, a series of tests may be required to determine exactly what is wrong. The other tests are thrombocyte count, prothrombin time (PT), partial thromboplastin time (PTT), fibrinogen level, thrombin clot time TCT and, perhaps, a d-dimer test.

Thrombin is a blood enzyme protein (protease) that is formed from prothrombin, produced in your pet’s liver. It activates blood platelets and helps convert fibrinogen to fibrin to seal bleeding blood vessels.

At one time, this test was a popular way to monitor anticoagulant therapy in people who developed blood clots that had led to heart attacks. Pets do not get heart attacks. In humans, the TCT has been replaced by newer, more sophisticated testing methods.

Reasons Why Your Pet’s Thrombin Clot Time Could Be Prolonged (Increased) :

The most common cause is a deficiency in fibrinogen. That is usually due to liver disease.

TCT can also be prolonged if pets receive heparin anticoagulant. Heparin has been given to dogs and cats in an attempt to clear clots from the lungs (pulmonary embolisms) and in cases of severe shock that cause clots to form throughout the circulatory system (disseminated intravascular coagulation, DIC). Heparin is also occasionally given to cats that develop blood clots blocking blood flow to their rear legs (saddle thrombi of hypertrophic cardiomyopathy or HCM).

Some forms of inherited hemophilia also prolong TCT time (hypofibrinogenemia, factor XIII deficiency?).

Rat and mouse poisons (warfarin-type) do not increase TCT.

Why Would My Pet’s Thrombin Clot Time Be Decreased (faster) ?

Anabolic steroids, such as stanozolol, (Winsterol) and testosterone have been known to shorten Thrombin Clot Time. Certain rare inherited fibrinogen defects (dysfibrinogenemia) are said to do this as well.

Complementary Tests :

Those mentioned at the beginning of this page, liver function tests if a fibrinogen deficiency exists,
FDP assay
(Fibrinogen degradation products)

.................... DxMe