Vol 27, No 4 (2020)
Original articles — Clinical cardiology
Published online: 2020-04-17

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Catheter directed thrombolytic therapy and aspiration thrombectomy in intermediate pulmonary embolism with long term results

Zoltan Ruzsa1, Zoltan Vámosi2, Balázs Berta3, Balázs Nemes1, Károly Tóth2, Nándor Kovács2, Endre Zima1, Dávid Becker1, Béla Merkely1
Pubmed: 32329040
Cardiol J 2020;27(4):368-375.


Background: Catheter directed thrombolysis (CDT) and thrombectomy represent well established techniques for the treatment of intermediate pulmonary embolism (IPE). The long-term effect of catheter
directed thrombolysis of IPE is unknown.
Methods: Clinical, interventional and echocardiographic data from 80 consecutive patients with IPE who were treated with CDT were evaluated. Primary end-points were technical success and major adverse events. Secondary end-points were cardiovascular mortality, all-cause mortality, clinical success, rate of bleeding complications, improvement in pulmonary pressure and echocardiography parameters. CDT completed with alteplase (10 mg bolus and 1 mg/h maintenance dose) through a pig-tail catheter for 24 h. After 24 h, control pulmonary angiography was performed.
Results: In total, 80 patients with a mean age of 59.0 ± 16.8 years were treated. CDT was successful after the first post-operative day in 72 (90%) patients, but thrombus aspiration and fragmentation was performed due to failed thrombolysis in 8 (10%) patients. Final technical and clinical success was reached in 79 (98.8%) and 77 (96.3%) patients, respectively. The mean CDT time in IPE was 27.8 ± 9.6 h. Invasive pulmonary pressure dropped from 57.5 ± 16.7 to 38.9 ± 13.5 (p < 0.001). A caval filter was implanted in 4 (5%) patients. The 1-year major adverse events and cardiovascular mortality rate was 4.0% and 1.4%, respectively. Access site complications (6 major and 6 minor) were encountered in 12 (16.2%) patients.
Conclusions: Catheter directed thrombolysis in submassive pulmonary embolism had excellent results. However, additional mechanical thrombectomy was necessary in some patients to achieve good clinical outcomes.

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