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J Thromb Haemost. 2012 Aug;10(8):1532-8. doi: 10.1111/j.1538-7836.2012.04798.x.

Markers of coagulation, fibrinolysis and inflammation in relation to post-thrombotic syndrome.

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Laboratory for Thrombosis and Hemostasis, Department of Internal Medicine, Maastricht University Medical Centre, Maastricht, the Netherlands.



Post-thrombotic syndrome (PTS) occurs in 20-50% of patients after a deep venous thrombosis (DVT). It is difficult to accurately predict which patients will develop PTS. Biomarkers could be a valuable tool for PTS risk assessment.


To investigate whether increased levels of factor (F)VIII, C-reactive protein (CRP) or D-dimer, over time, are associated with the development of PTS in patients after an acute DVT.


PTS status was assessed using the Villalta scale. Blood sampling was performed at three points during follow-up.


A cohort of 228 consecutive patients was included after an acute DVT. At T1 (12 months after index DVT), both levels of D-dimer (median 725 ng mL(-1) [interquartile range, IQR 400-1400[ vs. 378 ng mL(-1) [251-652] P=0.004) and CRP (median 3.9 mg L(-1) [IQR 1.6-8.5] vs. 2.4 mg L(-1) [1.0-4.3] P=0.018) were increased in patients with PTS, compared with patients without PTS. Factor (F)VIII was not associated with PTS. In the multivariate logistic regression analysis, varicosities (odds ratio [OR] 13.4 95% confidence interval [CI] 3.0-59.1 P=0.001), a previous ipsilateral DVT (OR 6.3 95% CI 1.5-26.9 P=0.012) and CRP>5 mg L(-1) on T1 (OR 8.0 95% CI 2.4-26.4 P=0.001) were significantly associated with PTS.


Besides previous ipsilateral DVT and varicosities, CRP>5 mg L(-1) at T1 was strongly and independently associated with PTS. Persistent inflammation rather than hypercoagulability might be the most important etiological factor in PTS, and may be a target for future therapy. The development of a risk score for PTS, including both clinical risk factors and biomarker levels, such as CRP, might be desirable.

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