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Thrombolytics for Deep Vein Thrombosis


Topic Overview

Thrombolytics are medicines that rapidly dissolve a blood clot. They might be used to treat deep vein thrombosis if it is causing severe symptoms.

These medicines are used in the hospital. They are given through a vein in the hand or arm. Or a doctor might use a special tube called a catheter and give the medicine directly into the blood clot.

These medicines can greatly increase the risk of bleeding, so they are used only in very specific situations where the risk of bleeding can be balanced against the risks of not dissolving the blood clot rapidly. Thrombolytics may reduce the incidence of postthrombotic syndrome in people who are at high risk for this condition.

Related Information

References

Other Works Consulted

  • Hirsch J, et al. (2008). Executive summary: American College of Chest Physicians evidence-based clinical practice guidelines (8th ed.). Chest, 133(6): 71S–109S.

Credits

ByHealthwise Staff
Primary Medical ReviewerE. Gregory Thompson, MD - Internal Medicine
Specialist Medical ReviewerJeffrey S. Ginsberg, MD - Hematology
Last RevisedDecember 28, 2011

eMedicineHealth Medical Reference from Healthwise

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