Expired CME Article

Upper Extremity Deep Vein Thrombosis

Authors: Mrugeshkumar K. Shah, MD, MPh, MS, David T. Burke, MD, MA, Stephanie H. Shah, MD


Upper-extremity deep vein thrombosis (DVT) is a fairly uncommon syndrome of complex etiology and varied presentation. Its incidence has recently grown, and it has become more widely recognized in diverse clinical settings. Clinical reviews and prospective studies have clarified some aspects of the clinical presentation and setting and have alerted clinicians to the significant morbidity and risk of pulmonary embolization that exist in patients with this condition. Still, upper-extremity DVT remains a source of clinical bafflement to many physicians who, in dealing with patients with this condition, generate a steady stream of questions and referrals to vascular surgeons, hematologists, radiologists, and other specialists with presumed expertise in the diagnosis and management of this disease. From whence came this state of affairs?

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