Why are chest symptoms in patients with superficial thrombophlebitis cause for concern?

Updated: Apr 17, 2019
  • Author: Khanjan H Nagarsheth, MD, MBA; Chief Editor: Vincent Lopez Rowe, MD  more...
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Answer

Patients who lack deep system involvement may rarely progress to develop DVT over time. Also, patients who present with clinical evidence of superficial phlebitis may rarely have deep system involvement that is clinically occult. The incidence of fatal pulmonary embolism (PE) in these patients is not insignificant. Any chest symptoms, no matter how minor, should be considered extremely worrisome in a patient with superficial thrombophlebitis, as PE is not uncommon and can be difficult to diagnose.


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