Traveler's Thrombosis: A Systematic Review

Mohammed T. Ansari; Bernard M.Y. Cheung; Jia Qing Huang; Bo Eklof; Johan P.E. Karlberg


J Travel Med. 2005;12(3):142-154. 

In This Article


Literature on the subject was retrieved from MEDLINE (1966-03/2004), EMBASE (1991-03/2004), and hand search of reference lists of the retrieved literature. Some experts in the field were also contacted. The indexed terms (medical subject headings) used were 'travel,' 'thrombosis,' 'pulmonary embolism,' and 'thromboembolism.' The search was restricted to studies published in English.

Original studies were eligible if they evaluated the risk of VTE, including isolated calf muscle vein thrombosis, associated with travel exposure as a hard outcome for the general population. Case series and interventional trials were not eligible; neither were studies evaluating the risk of superficial thrombophlebitis.

The following criteria were employed to evaluate study quality: (1) a focused question; (2) appropriate eligibility criteria; (3) sources of cases/cohorts and/or controls; (4) comparability of baseline characteristics; (5) confounders and adjustments; (6) unbiased outcome assessment; (7) retrieval of exposure history before or after diagnosis; (8) diagnostic methods; (9) adequate follow-up; (10) nonrespondent or dropout rate; (11) description of randomization; (12) prior sample-size calculation; (13) within-subject differences in factors other than travel exposure in before-after studies; and (14) other systematic bias. Data were abstracted for group size, exposure or event rate, risk estimates, study characteristics and settings, type and mode of travel exposure, and main conclusions.


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