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Korean J Intern Med. 2017 Nov;32(6):1037-1044. doi: 10.3904/kjim.2016.248. Epub 2017 Mar 13.

Epidemiological trend of pulmonary thromboembolism at a tertiary hospital in Korea.

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Department of Internal Medicine, Chung-Ang University Hospital, Seoul, Korea.



Despite increasing interest in pulmonary thromboembolism (PTE), data on recent trends in PTE incidence are limited. This study evaluated the recent incidence rate of PTE.


We performed a retrospective chart review of patients with PTE admitted to Chung-Ang University Hospital during the 10-year period from 2006 to 2015. Age-standardized incidence and mortality rates were calculated by the direct method per 100,000 populations. To analyze the trend of risk factor, we also calculated the proportions of cancer, major operation, and recent major fracture over that time.


Total crude incidence rate of PTE per 100,000 was 229.36 and the age-sex adjusted standardized incidence rate was 151.28 (95% confidence interval [CI], 127.88 to 177.10). The incidence rate have been significantly increased 1.083 times annually from 2006 (105.96 per 100,000) to 2015 (320.02 per 100,000) (95% CI, 1.049 to 1.118; p < 0.001). These incidences also increased annually in age group of 35 to 54, 55 to 74, and ≥ 75 years, and in both males (odds ratio [OR], 1.071; 95% CI, 1.019 to 1.127; p = 0.007) and females (OR, 1.091; 95% CI, 1.047 to 1.136; p < 0.001). Cancer accounted for most of the increase from 20.0% at 2006 to 2007 to 42.8% at 2014 to 2015 (OR, 1.154; 95% CI, 1.074 to 1.240; p < 0.001), while the proportions of recent fracture and major operation remained constant.


The incidence of pulmonary embolism has gradually increased over the 10 years. The increase of PTE incidence was mainly due to increased proportion of cancer patients.


Computed tomography; Epidemiology; Incidence; Pulmonary embolism; Risk factors

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