PURPOSE - To evaluate an approach to the treatment of iliofemoral deep vein thrombosis (DVT) that included pharmacomechanical catheter-directed thrombolysis with reteplase and the Helix mechanical thrombectomy device, followed by early stent placement.
MATERIALS AND METHODS - During 3-year period, 23 symptomatic limbs in 18 patients with iliofemoral DVT were treated with reteplase catheter-directed thrombolysis. After an initial infusion of 8 to 16 hours, any residual acute thrombus over a long segment (> 10 cm) was treated by maceration with use of the Helix thrombectomy device. Residual short-segment (< 10 cm) iliac vein thrombus and/or stenosis were treated with stent placement. Technical success, clinical success, complications, thrombolytic infusion time, total thrombolytic agent dose, fibrinogen level changes, and late limb status were retrospectively analyzed.
RESULTS - Technical success was achieved in 23 of 23 limbs (100%). Clinical success was achieved in 22 of 23 limbs (96%). Complete or partial thrombolysis was observed in 19 of 23 limbs (83%). Major bleeding was observed in one patient (6%) and necessitated blood transfusion. Mean per-limb thrombolytic infusion time and total dose were 19.6 hours +/- 8.1 and 13.8 U +/- 5.3 reteplase, respectively. Mean serum fibrinogen nadir and percentage drop in serum fibrinogen were 282 mg/dL +/- 167 and 47% +/- 24%, respectively. Late (mean, 19.8 +/- 11.6 months) modified Venous Disability Scores were 0 (none) for six limbs, 1 (mild) for 10 limbs, 2 (moderate) for two limbs, and 3 (severe) for no limbs.
CONCLUSION - In a preliminary experience, pharmacomechanical catheter-directed iliofemoral DVT thrombolysis with early stent placement was safe and effective.