Home >  News >  June, 2014

The Secret to Fewer Post-operative Deep-Vein Blood Clots

Prevention program leads to an 84% drop in the rate of DVT.

Published: June 2, 2014

In what could be a model for other surgical facilities, a coordinated, multi-faceted, 2-year effort to reduce blood clots at Boston (Mass.) Medical Center succeeded in reducing deep venous thromboses (DVT) by 84% and pulmonary emboli by 55%, the American College of Surgeons reports.

Along with urging patients to walk 3 times a day, including on the day of surgery, if possible, the program incorporated an analysis of risk factors such as age, obesity, smoking, bed confinement, personal and family history, and length of operation.

Along with the need for early mobilization, electronic physician orders specified a requirement to score patient risk, to provide appropriate preventive treatment based on risk scores and, for high-risk patients, continuing treatment once patients were home. Risk-based prophylaxis included inflatable pressure boots and low doses of blood thinners. Patients were also educated about the importance of preventing blood clots.

Comparing the 2 years before the program was implemented with the 2 years that followed, the frequency of DVT declined from 1.9% of 1,569 patients to 0.3% of 1,323 patients, and the frequency of pulmonary emboli dropped from 1.1% of 1,569 patients to 0.5% of 1,323 patients.

Jim Burger


Also in the News...

Beverly Hills Anesthesiologist Injected Himself With Drugs During Surgery and Later Gave Patient a Lethal Dose of Demerol
Lawsuit: Patient Suffered Emotional Distress Listening to Surgeon Talk While He Operated on Her
MedPAC Will Recommend No Payment Update for ASCs in 2019
Why Was This N.J. Pain Management Doc Barred From Practice?
Researchers Say a Lack of Education Leads Patients to Overestimate Their Post-op Pain
Deadly DVT: Man Dies From Pulmonary Embolism Following Leg Tendon Surgery
A New Kind of Gender Bias for Female Surgeons

New to Outpatient Surgery Magazine?
Sign-up to continue reading this article.
Register Now
Have an account? Please log in:
Email Address:
  Remember my login on this computer

advertiser banner

Other Articles That May Interest You

Safety: Inside Our Near-Miss Wrong-Site Surgery

Lessons learned from almost implanting the wrong IOL.

Get the Most Out of Your Malignant Hyperthermia Drills

11 tips to help make sure you're prepared for the worst.

Marking the Site Right (Correctly)

There are lots of ways to do it wrong, but only a couple of ways to do it right.