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Vascular. 2017 Oct;25(5):525-532. doi: 10.1177/1708538117702061. Epub 2017 Apr 3.

Single-center retrospective review of ultrasound-accelerated versus traditional catheter-directed thrombolysis for acute lower extremity deep venous thrombosis.

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1 Division of Vascular and Endovascular Surgery, Houston Methodist DeBakey Heart & Vascular Center, Houston Methodist Hospital, Houston, TX, USA.
2 Division of Vascular Diseases and Surgery, Department of Surgery, Wexner Medical Center, Ohio State University, Columbus, OH, USA.
3 Division of Vascular and Endovascular Surgery, Department of Surgery, University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio, San Antonio, TX, USA.


Objective Systemic anticoagulation remains the standard for acute lower extremity (LE) deep venous thrombosis (DVT), but growing interest in catheter-directed thrombolysis (CDT) and its potential to reduce the incidence of post-thrombotic syndrome (PTS) has led to advent of ultrasound-accelerated CDT (US-CDT). Few studies to date have examined the outcomes of US-CDT against traditional CDT (T-CDT). Methods This is a retrospective, single-center review of all patients treated for acute LE DVT over a five-year period with either US- and T-CDT. Patients were stratified based on demographics, presentation, co-morbidities, risk factors, and peri-procedural data. Results Seventy-six limbs in 67 patients were treated; 51 limbs in 42 patients were treated with US-CDT, and 25 limbs in 25 patients were treated with T-CDT. Adjuncts include: pharmacomechanical thrombolysis ( n = 28 vs. 20, p = 0.04), angioplasty ( n = 22 vs. 18, p = 0.11), stenting ( n = 30 vs. 6, p ≤ 0.001), and IVC filter insertion ( n = 5 vs. 0, p = 0.07). Mean lysis times were 21 ± 1.7 and 24 ± 1.8 h for US- and T-CDT, respectively ( p = 0.26). Thirty (25 ultrasound, 5 traditional) limbs had complete lysis. Thirty-one (22 ultrasound, 9 traditional) limbs had incomplete lysis. Fifteen (4 ultrasound, 11 traditional) limbs had ineffective lysis ( p = 0.002 in favor of ultrasound). Four patients (3 US-CDT, 1 T-CDT) had recurrent ipsilateral thrombosis within 30 days ( p = 0.60). By Kaplan-Meier analysis, there were no significant difference between primary patency, primary-assisted patency, secondary patency, re-thrombosis, and recurrent symptoms at 6, 12, and 24 months. Conclusion US-CDT does not significantly improve mid-term patencies but results in greater acute clot burden reduction in patients with acute LE DVTs compared to T-CDT, which may be beneficial in reducing the long-term incidence of PTS.


CDT; DVT; EKOS; outcomes; thrombolysis; ultrasound

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