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SURGICAL: Other Vascular Procedures with CC

Thrombophlebitis, inflammation of a vein with an associated blood clot (thrombus), typically occurs in the veins of the lower extremities when fibrin and platelets accumulate at areas of stasis or turbulence near venous valves. Deep vein thrombophlebitis (deep vein thrombosis [DVT]) occurs more than 90% of the time in small veins, such as the lesser saphenous, or in large veins, such as the femoral and popliteal. DVT and its possible consequence, pulmonary embolism, are the leading causes of preventable mortality in hospitalized patients in the United States. DVT occurs in approximately 1 person in 20 over her/his lifetime, but in hospitalized patients, the incidence of DVT ranges from 20% to 70%.

DVT is potentially more serious than that of the superficial veins because the deep veins carry approximately 90% of the blood flow as it leaves the lower extremities. Once a thrombus begins to move, it becomes an embolus (a detached intravascular mass carried by the blood). If it reaches the lungs, a pulmonary embolus, it is potentially fatal.

892 Thrombophlebitis

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