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Common vein condition increases risk for developing life-threating blood clots
Date:8/17/2011

(WASHINGTON, August 17, 2011) Patients with clinically diagnosed superficial vein thrombosis (SVT), a blood clot in the veins just beneath the skin that commonly resolves on its own without treatment, are four to six times more likely to develop venous thromboembolism (VTE), a dangerous, often life-threatening condition, according to study results published today in Blood, the Journal of the American Society of Hematology (ASH).

Recent studies have shown that patients diagnosed with SVT using ultrasound to confirm the presence of a clot showed increased risk of VTE; however, it was unclear whether patients with "clinically diagnosed" (without the use of ultrasound) SVT also had an increased risk for VTE.

"While current literature defines 'real' SVT as a disorder diagnosed both clinically and through an ultrasound, in reality, clinical practice does not necessarily follow this model. In fact, most physicians are able to identify SVT by the presence of a red, painful, palpable cord in the course of a patient's superficial vein, for which additional testing with ultrasound is not necessary," said Suzanne C. Cannegieter, MD, PhD, senior study author and Senior Clinical Researcher in the Department of Clinical Epidemiology at Leiden University Medical Center in Leiden, Netherlands.

VTE is a clotting disorder that includes both deep-vein thrombosis (DVT) and pulmonary embolism (PE). DVT is a blood clot that typically forms in the deep veins of the leg and can develop into PE when the clot breaks free and becomes lodged in a major artery in the lung, blocking blood flow. Symptoms of PE can include sharp chest pain, rapid pulse, shortness of breath, fever, and, in extreme cases, sudden death. While sy
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Contact: Lindsey Love
webmaster@hematology.org
202-552-4925
American Society of Hematology
Source:Eurekalert

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