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The page below is a sample from the LabCE course Antiplatelet and Anticoagulant Pharmacology for the Laboratory Professional. Access the complete course and earn ASCLS P.A.C.E.-approved continuing education credits by subscribing online.

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Vitamin K

Vitamin K is used in both nutritional deficiency and in warfarin overdose (discussed previously). Vitamin K is involved in the production of factors II, VII, IX, and X. If vitamin K is not in the diet, if there is an issue with the absorption of vitamin K, or if excessive antibiotic use has destroyed the vitamin K producing gut flora, vitamin K deficiency can result. The bleeding seen in vitamin K deficiency is like the bleeding seen with other coagulation factor deficiencies- deep bleeding.
Laboratory diagnosis of vitamin K deficiency:
  • PT and aPTT will both be prolonged, since the vitamin K dependent factors are found in the intrinsic, extrinsic, and common coagulation pathways.
  • Correction of the PT and aPTT if the patient receives vitamin K.