Below-knee deep vein thrombosis (DVT): Diagnostic and treatment patterns

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

3 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Background: Guidelines are lacking for isolated below-knee deep vein thrombosis (BKDVT). The American College of Chest Physicians (ACCP) suggests anticoagulation only if symptoms are severe, otherwise surveillance with follow-up ultrasound in 2 weeks is recommended. Yet clinical practice remains highly variable. Little is known about the natural history of BKDVT and how to best manage these patients. Methods: A retrospective analysis was conducted of medical records from 2014-2016. Risk factors were assessed such as age, gender, malignancy, recent surgery, and history of DVT. Treatment decisions and outcomes were identified. Radiology reports were graded for clarity. Chi-square and logistic regression were used to correlate risk factors with outcomes and determine odds of treatment. Results: New isolated BKDVT was identified in 102 patients. Patients were symptomatic or had previous pulmonary embolism (PE) or DVT in all cases. Eighteen were positive for PE at diagnosis (17.6% of all patients or 62.1% with chest CT). Malignancy was independently associated with PE (P=0.015); no other risk factors were significant. Treatment was not associated with clinical risk factors. The language used for radiology reports was highly variable and was associated with the decision to treat with anticoagulation. One hundred percent were treated (n=24) when the report stated "positive DVT" and 89.2% (n=58) were treated after an objective description without the word "DVT" (P=0.01). Treatment was much less likely if the report described BKDVT anatomically but was said to be "negative for DVT" (P<0.001). A total of 86.3% (n=88) of all patients were treated, compared to 46.2% (n=6) of patients in this group (n=13). IVC filters were placed in 3 patients. Of the 14 untreated patients, 5 received surveillance, 3 developed new proximal DVT, and none developed PE. Conclusions: About 90% of patients diagnosed with BKDVT received anticoagulation after the initial diagnosis. Surveillance was not commonly recommended and is likely underutilized. Radiology reporting was highly variable and correlated with clinical treatment decisions, whereas other clinical risk factors did not. Describing BKDVT findings only in terms of being "positive" or "negative" for DVT may be inadequate.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)S134-S139
JournalCardiovascular Diagnosis and Therapy
Volume7
DOIs
StatePublished - Dec 1 2017

Fingerprint

Venous Thrombosis
Knee
Pulmonary Embolism
Therapeutics
Radiology
Natural History
Medical Records
Neoplasms
Language
Thorax
Logistic Models
Guidelines

Keywords

  • Anticoagulation
  • Calf DVT
  • Deep vein thrombosis (DVT)
  • Distal DVT
  • Surveillance

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine

Cite this

Below-knee deep vein thrombosis (DVT) : Diagnostic and treatment patterns. / Fleck, Drew; Albadawi, Hassan; Wallace, Alex; Knuttinen, Grace; Naidu, Sailendra; Oklu, Rahmi.

In: Cardiovascular Diagnosis and Therapy, Vol. 7, 01.12.2017, p. S134-S139.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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abstract = "Background: Guidelines are lacking for isolated below-knee deep vein thrombosis (BKDVT). The American College of Chest Physicians (ACCP) suggests anticoagulation only if symptoms are severe, otherwise surveillance with follow-up ultrasound in 2 weeks is recommended. Yet clinical practice remains highly variable. Little is known about the natural history of BKDVT and how to best manage these patients. Methods: A retrospective analysis was conducted of medical records from 2014-2016. Risk factors were assessed such as age, gender, malignancy, recent surgery, and history of DVT. Treatment decisions and outcomes were identified. Radiology reports were graded for clarity. Chi-square and logistic regression were used to correlate risk factors with outcomes and determine odds of treatment. Results: New isolated BKDVT was identified in 102 patients. Patients were symptomatic or had previous pulmonary embolism (PE) or DVT in all cases. Eighteen were positive for PE at diagnosis (17.6{\%} of all patients or 62.1{\%} with chest CT). Malignancy was independently associated with PE (P=0.015); no other risk factors were significant. Treatment was not associated with clinical risk factors. The language used for radiology reports was highly variable and was associated with the decision to treat with anticoagulation. One hundred percent were treated (n=24) when the report stated {"}positive DVT{"} and 89.2{\%} (n=58) were treated after an objective description without the word {"}DVT{"} (P=0.01). Treatment was much less likely if the report described BKDVT anatomically but was said to be {"}negative for DVT{"} (P<0.001). A total of 86.3{\%} (n=88) of all patients were treated, compared to 46.2{\%} (n=6) of patients in this group (n=13). IVC filters were placed in 3 patients. Of the 14 untreated patients, 5 received surveillance, 3 developed new proximal DVT, and none developed PE. Conclusions: About 90{\%} of patients diagnosed with BKDVT received anticoagulation after the initial diagnosis. Surveillance was not commonly recommended and is likely underutilized. Radiology reporting was highly variable and correlated with clinical treatment decisions, whereas other clinical risk factors did not. Describing BKDVT findings only in terms of being {"}positive{"} or {"}negative{"} for DVT may be inadequate.",
keywords = "Anticoagulation, Calf DVT, Deep vein thrombosis (DVT), Distal DVT, Surveillance",
author = "Drew Fleck and Hassan Albadawi and Alex Wallace and Grace Knuttinen and Sailendra Naidu and Rahmi Oklu",
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T1 - Below-knee deep vein thrombosis (DVT)

T2 - Diagnostic and treatment patterns

AU - Fleck, Drew

AU - Albadawi, Hassan

AU - Wallace, Alex

AU - Knuttinen, Grace

AU - Naidu, Sailendra

AU - Oklu, Rahmi

PY - 2017/12/1

Y1 - 2017/12/1

N2 - Background: Guidelines are lacking for isolated below-knee deep vein thrombosis (BKDVT). The American College of Chest Physicians (ACCP) suggests anticoagulation only if symptoms are severe, otherwise surveillance with follow-up ultrasound in 2 weeks is recommended. Yet clinical practice remains highly variable. Little is known about the natural history of BKDVT and how to best manage these patients. Methods: A retrospective analysis was conducted of medical records from 2014-2016. Risk factors were assessed such as age, gender, malignancy, recent surgery, and history of DVT. Treatment decisions and outcomes were identified. Radiology reports were graded for clarity. Chi-square and logistic regression were used to correlate risk factors with outcomes and determine odds of treatment. Results: New isolated BKDVT was identified in 102 patients. Patients were symptomatic or had previous pulmonary embolism (PE) or DVT in all cases. Eighteen were positive for PE at diagnosis (17.6% of all patients or 62.1% with chest CT). Malignancy was independently associated with PE (P=0.015); no other risk factors were significant. Treatment was not associated with clinical risk factors. The language used for radiology reports was highly variable and was associated with the decision to treat with anticoagulation. One hundred percent were treated (n=24) when the report stated "positive DVT" and 89.2% (n=58) were treated after an objective description without the word "DVT" (P=0.01). Treatment was much less likely if the report described BKDVT anatomically but was said to be "negative for DVT" (P<0.001). A total of 86.3% (n=88) of all patients were treated, compared to 46.2% (n=6) of patients in this group (n=13). IVC filters were placed in 3 patients. Of the 14 untreated patients, 5 received surveillance, 3 developed new proximal DVT, and none developed PE. Conclusions: About 90% of patients diagnosed with BKDVT received anticoagulation after the initial diagnosis. Surveillance was not commonly recommended and is likely underutilized. Radiology reporting was highly variable and correlated with clinical treatment decisions, whereas other clinical risk factors did not. Describing BKDVT findings only in terms of being "positive" or "negative" for DVT may be inadequate.

AB - Background: Guidelines are lacking for isolated below-knee deep vein thrombosis (BKDVT). The American College of Chest Physicians (ACCP) suggests anticoagulation only if symptoms are severe, otherwise surveillance with follow-up ultrasound in 2 weeks is recommended. Yet clinical practice remains highly variable. Little is known about the natural history of BKDVT and how to best manage these patients. Methods: A retrospective analysis was conducted of medical records from 2014-2016. Risk factors were assessed such as age, gender, malignancy, recent surgery, and history of DVT. Treatment decisions and outcomes were identified. Radiology reports were graded for clarity. Chi-square and logistic regression were used to correlate risk factors with outcomes and determine odds of treatment. Results: New isolated BKDVT was identified in 102 patients. Patients were symptomatic or had previous pulmonary embolism (PE) or DVT in all cases. Eighteen were positive for PE at diagnosis (17.6% of all patients or 62.1% with chest CT). Malignancy was independently associated with PE (P=0.015); no other risk factors were significant. Treatment was not associated with clinical risk factors. The language used for radiology reports was highly variable and was associated with the decision to treat with anticoagulation. One hundred percent were treated (n=24) when the report stated "positive DVT" and 89.2% (n=58) were treated after an objective description without the word "DVT" (P=0.01). Treatment was much less likely if the report described BKDVT anatomically but was said to be "negative for DVT" (P<0.001). A total of 86.3% (n=88) of all patients were treated, compared to 46.2% (n=6) of patients in this group (n=13). IVC filters were placed in 3 patients. Of the 14 untreated patients, 5 received surveillance, 3 developed new proximal DVT, and none developed PE. Conclusions: About 90% of patients diagnosed with BKDVT received anticoagulation after the initial diagnosis. Surveillance was not commonly recommended and is likely underutilized. Radiology reporting was highly variable and correlated with clinical treatment decisions, whereas other clinical risk factors did not. Describing BKDVT findings only in terms of being "positive" or "negative" for DVT may be inadequate.

KW - Anticoagulation

KW - Calf DVT

KW - Deep vein thrombosis (DVT)

KW - Distal DVT

KW - Surveillance

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