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J Invasive Cardiol. 2009 Nov;21(11):E221-3.

A needle through the heart: rare complication of inferior vena caval filters.

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Borgess Heart Institute and Michigan State University/Kalamazoo Center for Medical Studies, Kalamazoo, Michigan 49048, USA.


Pulmonary embolism is the third most common cardiovascular disease. For prevention of pulmonary embolism, vena caval filters are extensively used in the United States. Of the reported complications of vena caval filters, strut fracture of the filter is the least common. We present a rare case of pericardial tamponade from fractured filter strut/leg embolization. We also discuss a possible hypothesis for the filter fracture along with its complications.

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