Gynecologic and obstetric management of women with von Willebrand disease: summary of 3 systematic reviews of the literature Academic Article uri icon

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  • Abstract von Willebrand disease (VWD) disproportionately affects women because of the potential for heavy menstrual bleeding (HMB), delivery complications, and postpartum hemorrhage (PPH). To systematically synthesize the evidence regarding first-line management of HMB, treatment of women requiring or desiring neuraxial analgesia, and management of PPH. We searched Medline and EMBASE through October 2019 for randomized trials, comparative observational studies, and case series comparing the effects of desmopressin, hormonal therapy, and tranexamic acid (TxA) on HMB; comparing different von Willebrand factor (VWF) levels in women with VWD who were undergoing labor and receiving neuraxial anesthesia; and measuring the effects of TxA on PPH. We conducted duplicate study selection, data abstraction, and appraisal of risk of bias. Whenever possible, we conducted meta-analyses. We assessed the quality of the evidence using the GRADE (Grading of Recommendations Assessment, Development, and Evaluation) approach. We included 1 randomized trial, 3 comparative observational studies, and 10 case series. Moderate-certainty evidence showed that desmopressin resulted in a smaller reduction of menstrual blood loss (difference in mean change from baseline, 41.6 [95% confidence interval, 16.6-63.6] points in a pictorial blood assessment chart score) as compared with TxA. There was very-low-certainty evidence about how first-line treatments compare against each other, the effects of different VWF levels in women receiving neuraxial anesthesia, and the effects of postpartum administration of TxA. Most of the evidence relevant to the gynecologic and obstetric management of women with VWD addressed by most guidelines is very low quality. Future studies that address research priorities will be key when updating such guidelines.


  • Brignardello, Romina
  • El Alayli, Abdallah
  • Husainat, Nedaa
  • Kalot, Mohamad A
  • Shahid, Shaneela
  • Aljabirii, Yazan
  • Britt, Alec
  • Alturkmani, Hani
  • El-Khechen, Hussein
  • Motaghi, Shahrzad
  • Roller, John
  • Abdul-Kadir, Rezan
  • Couper, Susie
  • Kouides, Peter
  • Lavin, Michelle
  • Ozelo, Margareth C
  • Weyand, Angela
  • James, Paula D
  • Connell, Nathan T
  • Flood, Veronica H
  • Mustafa, Reem Adel

publication date

  • January 11, 2022