Items in AFP with MESH term: Pulmonary Embolism
ABSTRACT: Pulmonary embolism is a disorder that is associated with significant morbidity and mortality. Right-sided heart failure and recurrent pulmonary embolism are the main causes of death associated with pulmonary embolism in the first two weeks after the embolic event. Thrombolysis is a potentially lifesaving therapy when used in conjunction with standard anticoagulation. However, it has significant side effects and must therefore be used with caution. Indications for thrombolysis are not well defined and are thus controversial. The only current absolute indication is massive pulmonary embolism with hypotension. Other potential indications include right heart dysfunction, recurrent pulmonary embolism and the prevention of pulmonary hypertension. However, no evidence exists to show benefit of thrombolytic therapy over standard anticoagulation therapy for recurrent pulmonary embolism, mortality or chronic complications. Bleeding is the most common complication of thrombolysis and may be fatal.
ABSTRACT: The Seventh American College of Chest Physicians (ACCP) Conference on Antithrombotic and Thrombolytic Therapy provides guidelines for outpatient management of anticoagulation therapy. The ACCP guidelines recommend short-term warfarin therapy, with the goal of maintaining an International Normalized Ratio (INR) of 2.5 +/- 0.5, after major orthopedic surgery. Therapy for venous thromboembolism includes an INR of 2.5 +/- 0.5, with the length of therapy determined by associated conditions. For patients with atrial fibrillation, the INR is maintained at 2.5 +/- 0.5 indefinitely; for most patients with mechanical valves, the recommended INR is 3.0 +/- 0.5 indefinitely. Use of outpatient low-molecular-weight heparin (LMWH) is as safe and effective as inpatient unfractionated heparin for treatment of venous thromboembolism. The ACCP recommends starting warfarin with unfractionated heparin or LMWH for at least five days and continuing until a therapeutic INR is achieved. Because patients with venous thromboembolism and cancer who have been treated with LMWH have a survival advantage that extends beyond their venous thromboembolism treatment, the ACCP recommends beginning their therapy with three to six months of LMWH. When invasive procedures require the interruption of oral anticoagulation therapy, recommendations for bridge therapy are determined by balancing the risk of bleeding against the risk of thromboembolism. Patients at higher risk of thromboembolization should stop warfarin therapy four to five days before surgery and start LMWH or unfractionated heparin two to three days before surgery.
Venous Thromboembolism During Pregnancy - Article
ABSTRACT: Venous thromboembolism is the leading cause of maternal death in the United States. Pregnancy is a risk factor for deep venous thrombosis, and risk is further increased with a personal or family history of thrombosis or thrombophilia. Screening for thrombophilia is not recommended for the general population; however, testing for inherited or acquired thrombophilic conditions is recommended when personal or family history suggests increased risk. Factor V Leiden and prothrombin G20210A mutation are the most common inherited thrombophilias, and antiphospholipid antibody syndrome is the most important acquired defect. Clinical symptoms of deep venous thrombosis may be subtle and difficult to distinguish from gestational edema. Venous compression (Doppler) ultrasonography is the diagnostic test of choice. Pulmonary embolism typically presents postpartum with dyspnea and tachypnea. Multidetector-row (spiral) computed tomography is the test of choice for pulmonary embolism. Warfarin is contraindicated during pregnancy, but is safe to use postpartum and is compatible with breastfeeding. Low-molecular-weight heparin has largely replaced unfractionated heparin for prophylaxis and treatment in pregnancy.
ABSTRACT: The incidence of venous thromboembolic diseases is increasing as the U.S. population ages. At least one established risk factor is present in approximately 75 percent of patients who develop these diseases. Hospitalized patients and nursing home residents account for one half of all cases of deep venous thrombosis. A well-validated clinical prediction rule can be used for risk stratification of patients with suspected deep venous thrombosis. Used in combination with D-dimer or Doppler ultrasound tests, the prediction rule can reduce the need for contrast venography, as well as the likelihood of false-positive or false-negative test results. The inclusion of helical computed tomographic venography (i.e., a below-the-pelvis component) in pulmonary embolism protocols remains under evaluation. Specific combinations of a clinical prediction rule, ventilation-perfusion scanning, and D-dimer testing can rule out pulmonary embolism without an invasive or expensive investigation. A clinical prediction rule for pulmonary embolism is most helpful when it is used with subsequent evaluations such as ventilation-perfusion scanning, D-dimer testing, or computed tomography. Technologic advances are improving the resolution of helical computed tomography to allow detection of smaller emboli; however, further study is needed to provide definitive evidence supporting the role of this imaging technique in the diagnosis of pulmonary embolism. D-dimer testing is helpful clinically only when the result is negative. A negative D-dimer test can be used in combination with a clinical decision rule, ventilation-perfusion scanning, and/or helical computed tomography to lower the probability of pulmonary embolism to the point that aggressive treatment is not required. Evidence-based algorithms help guide the diagnosis of deep venous thrombosis and pulmonary embolism.
ABSTRACT: Treatment goals for deep venous thrombosis include stopping clot propagation and preventing the recurrence of thrombus, the occurrence of pulmonary embolism, and the development of pulmonary hypertension, which can be a complication of multiple recurrent pulmonary emboli. About 30 percent of patients with deep venous thrombosis or pulmonary embolism have a thrombophilia. An extensive evaluation is suggested in patients younger than 50 years with an idiopathic episode of deep venous thrombosis, patients with recurrent thrombosis, and patients with a family history of thromboembolism. Infusion of unfractionated heparin followed by oral administration of warfarin remains the mainstay of treatment for deep venous thrombosis. Subcutaneously administered low-molecular-weight (LMW) heparin is at least as effective as unfractionated heparin given in a continuous infusion. LMW heparin is the agent of choice for treating deep venous thrombosis in pregnant women and patients with cancer. Based on validated protocols, warfarin can be started at a dosage of 5 or 10 mg per day. The intensity and duration of warfarin therapy depends on the individual patient, but treatment of at least three months usually is required. Some patients with thrombophilias require lifetime anticoagulation. Treatment for pulmonary embolism is similar to that for deep venous thrombosis. Because of the risk of hypoxemia and hemodynamic instability, in-hospital management is advised. Unfractionated heparin commonly is used, although LMW heparin is safe and effective. Thrombolysis is used in patients with massive pulmonary embolism. Subcutaneous heparin, LMW heparin, and warfarin have been approved for use in surgical prophylaxis. Elastic compression stockings are useful in patients at lowest risk for thromboembolism. Intermittent pneumatic leg compression is a useful adjunct to anticoagulation and an alternative when anticoagulation is contraindicated.
Painful Plaques Shortly After Hospital Discharge - Photo Quiz
The Role of Chest CT in Diagnosing Pulmonary Embolism - AFP Journal Club
When Medical Errors Hit Home - Balancing Act
Diagnosing Pulmonary Embolism - Improving Patient Care
ACOG Practice Bulletin on Preventing Deep Venous Thrombosis and Pulmonary Embolism - Practice Guidelines