Management of cancer-associated upper extremity deep vein thrombosis

ALKindi, S.Y., Chai-Adisaksopha, C., Cheah, M. and Linkins, L.A. (2018) Management of cancer-associated upper extremity deep vein thrombosis with and without venous catheters at a tertiary care center. Thrombosis Research. 166, p.92-95.

doi: 10.1016/j.thromres.2018.03.020.


INTRODUCTION: Data on management of upper extremity deep vein thrombosis (UEDVT) in patients with cancer is limited. The objective of this study was to determine risk factors for UEDVT and the rates of recurrence and bleeding in a real-world setting.

METHODS: Retrospective review of consecutive patients assessed for cancer-associated UEDVT. Outcome measures were recurrent venous thromboembolism (VTE), and major and clinically relevant non-major bleeding (CRNMB). Risk factors for recurrent VTE and bleeding were assessed.

RESULTS: Mean duration of follow-up was 7.2 months. Two hundred cases were identified; 69% were associated with a central line. Non-line associated UEDVT occurred more frequently in the setting of breast cancer, lung cancer and documented local mass effect. The incidence of recurrent VTE was 18.5%, of which 14 (37.8%) were ipsilateral UEDVT. The risk of recurrence is higher with male gender (HR 2.0, 95% CI; 1.0-4.0). Major and CRNMB occurred in 1% and 11.5%, respectively. Concurrent use of an antiplatelet agent was associated with a higher risk of CRNMB compared to anticoagulant therapy alone (HR 3.9, 95% CI; 1.4-10.7).

CONCLUSIONS: Presence of a venous catheter was the primary risk factor for UEDVT, however, extrinsic compression by local tumour may be just as important for some cancer types. Furthermore, the majority of recurrent events did not occur in the same upper limb suggesting that UEDVT may be predictive of increased thrombotic risk rather than just a local effect of catheters.

Posted on IV Team May 23, 2018

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