Pharmacomechanical catheter-directed thrombolysis for pregnancy-related iliofemoral deep vein thrombosis

Allan I. Bloom*, Adam Farkas, Yossi Kalish, Uriel Elchalal, Galia Spectre

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Purpose Pharmacomechanical catheter-directed thrombolysis (PCDT) is relatively contraindicated during pregnancy and postpartum. The purpose of this study was to evaluate outcomes of PCDT in this population. Materials and Methods Data for 11 consecutive patients (aged 21-35 y) undergoing PCDT at a tertiary center for symptomatic pregnancy-related iliofemoral deep vein thrombosis (DVT) were retrospectively reviewed. Details regarding patient presentation, location and extent of thrombus, the PCDT procedure, outcomes, frequency of postthrombotic syndrome (PTS), and subsequent pregnancies were recorded. Two patients who presented in the first trimester terminated their pregnancies after PCDT, 2 patients who presented in the third trimester delayed PCDT until after delivery, and 7 patients who presented with postpartum DVT underwent immediate PCDT. Results Thrombus extended into the inferior vena cava in 5 patients (45%) and into popliteal/tibial veins in 7 (64%). Four patients (36%) had synchronous pulmonary embolism and three had May-Thurner compression. Median interval from diagnosis to PCDT was 5 days (range, 2-68 d); median duration of urokinase infusion was 27 hours (range, 16-72 h). Greater than 90% clot lysis was achieved in 9 of 11 patients (82%). Metal stents were placed in 8 of 11 patients (73%). A self-limiting popliteal hematoma developed in 1 patient, and 2 had early recurrent thrombosis requiring repeat PCDT. At median 20-month follow-up, nonocclusive thrombus was seen in 5 patients. No patient developed PTS. Three patients, all with stents, had uneventful pregnancies after PCDT. Conclusions Pharmacomechanical catheter-directed thrombolysis achieved encouraging initial outcomes in this series. Validation in prospective trials with larger enrollment and longer follow-up is needed.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)992-1000
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Vascular and Interventional Radiology
Issue number7
StatePublished - 1 Jul 2015
Externally publishedYes


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