Format

Send to

Choose Destination
Circ J. 2005 Aug;69(8):981-6.

Differences in clinical presentation of pulmonary embolism in older vs younger patients.

Author information

1
Department of Pulmonary Medicine, Gazi University School of Medicine, Ankara, Turkey. nkokturk@gazi.edu.tr

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

In order to better define the clinical characterization of pulmonary embolism (PE) in the elderly, the clinical and laboratory findings were compared in older (> or = 65 years old) and younger (< 65 years old) patients.

METHODS AND RESULTS:

The study group comprised 149 patients (58 older and 91 younger) who received a final diagnosis of PE and were retrospectively evaluated. The severity of PE was assessed by calculating the pulmonary vascular obstruction scores (PVOs) scintigraphically: PVOs > or = 50% was defined as severe disease. Dyspnea was the most frequent symptom in both groups. Chest pain and hemoptysis were less frequent in older patients (48.3% vs 79.1%, p = 0.001; 6.9% vs 20.9%, p = 0.021, respectively) whereas syncope occurred more often in the older group (27.6% vs 9.9%, p = 0.005). PVOs > or = 50% occurred in 55.1% of older and 32.9% of younger patients (odds ratio: 1.67, 95%confidence interval: 1.118-2.507, p = 0.013).

CONCLUSIONS:

The clinical presentation of PE can be subtle or atypical in elderly patients and hence they may have more severe disease. Therefore, a high clinical suspicion is required in order to prevent delays in diagnostic work-up and initiation of appropriate treatment.

PMID:
16041171
DOI:
10.1253/circj.69.981
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free full text

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for J-STAGE, Japan Science and Technology Information Aggregator, Electronic
Loading ...
Support Center