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Ann Vasc Dis. 2009;2(1):7-16. doi: 10.3400/avd.AVDrev07017. Epub 2009 Apr 15.

Percutaneous cardiopulmonary support for the treatment of acute pulmonary embolism: summarized review of the literature in Japan including our own experience.

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Internal Medicine, Onagawa Municipal Hospital, Onagawa, Japan.



Acute pulmonary embolism (APE) has high mortality. Some APEs with circulatory collapse or cardiopulmonary arrest have been treated by percutaneous cardiopulmonary support (PCPS) in Japan. But there have been no reports with a large number of series of APE treated with the use of PCPS.


We collected all the reported cases with acute thrombotic pulmonary embolism treated with PCPS before surgical embolectomy or those without surgical embolectomy in Japan, and assessed the effectiveness of PCPS. PCPS was combined with surgical embolectomy in 35% (68 of 193), thrombolytic therapy in 62% (120/193), and catheter therapy in 24% (46/193). The survival rate treated with PCPS was 73% (80% in surgical embolectomy, 71% in thrombolytic therapy, and 76% in catheter therapy). Logistic regression analysis showed that the mortality rate was elevated in cases with cardiopulmonary arrest (odds ratio [OR], 3.41; 95% confidence interval [CI], 1.52-7.67; p-value, 0.003) but not by surgical embolectomy (OR, 0.99; 95% CI, 0.39-2.53; p-value, 0.98), catheter therapy (OR, 0.71; 95% CI, 0.30-1.72; p-value, 0.45), and thrombolysis (OR, 1.60; 95% CI, 0.64-3.99; p-value, 0.31) as regards to the concomitant therapies with PCPS.


PCPS might improve the survival rate in APE patients with circulatory collapse or cardiopulmonary arrest, but there was no differences in outcome among cases treated by surgical embolectomy, catheter therapy, and thrombolysis as the concomitant therapies.


cardiopulmonary arrest; catheter therapy; extracorporeal membrane oxygenation; surgical embolectomy; thrombolysis

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