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Ann Vasc Surg. 2016 May;33:181-6. doi: 10.1016/j.avsg.2015.10.034. Epub 2016 Jan 22.

Efficacy of Retrievable Inferior Vena Cava Filter Placement in the Prevention of Pulmonary Embolism during Catheter-Directed Thrombectomy for Proximal Lower-Extremity Deep Vein Thrombosis.

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Division of Vascular Surgery, Department of Surgery, College of Medicine, The Catholic University of Korea, Seoul, Korea.
Division of Vascular Surgery, Department of Surgery, College of Medicine, The Catholic University of Korea, Seoul, Korea. Electronic address:



Inferior vena cava (IVC) filter placement is not indicated for thrombolytic interventional treatment for deep vein thrombosis (DVT). We analyzed the efficacy and feasibility of retrievable IVC filter placement for the preventive management of embolic shedding during catheter-directed thrombectomy (CDT) for DVT of lower extremity.


Seventy patients (35 males and 35 females) who underwent retrievable IVC filter placement to prevent thrombus dislodgement during CDT in all symptomatic DVT with thrombus age suspected within 4 weeks of the lower extremity between March 2008 and January 2014 were included in this study. All patients underwent laboratory blood study, duplex ultrasound and/or computed tomography for diagnosis, treatment, and follow-up in accordance with treatment policy of our Uijeongbu St. Mary's hospital. Two types of retrievable IVC filters (OptEase Filter, Cordis, Roden, The Netherlands; Gunther Tulip Filter, Cook, Bloomington, IN) were used to prevent thromboembolic events during CDT. After filter placement, subcutaneous low-molecular-weight heparin and overlapped to warfarin or new oral anticoagulant tried to achieve a target international normalized ratio (INR) of 2.0-3.0 in warfarin patients.


The thrombus was dislodged through the IVC filter during catheter-directed thrombolytic therapy in 22 patients (31.4%). In 22 cases, the thromboses were trapped by the retrievable IVC filter, and follow-up images showed thrombus capture. Thirty-four patients (48.6%) received percutaneous transluminal angioplasty (PTA). Additional stents were inserted in 23 patients (32.8%). Pulmonary embolism (PE) was not observed in patients implanted with retrievable IVC filters.


Our study findings suggest that retrieval IVC filter placement during interventional treatments of DVT of lower extremity such as thrombectomy of vein thrombus with or without stent insertion at compressed deep vein is favorable and effective for protecting against PE or lethal complications. We recommend carefully that before the management of DVT thrombus of lower extremity, retrieval IVC filter placement should be considered for preventing morbidity related with the PE.

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