To evaluate relationships between immediate venographic results and clinical outcomes of pharmacomechanical catheter-directed thrombolysis (PCDT).
Venograms from 317 patients with acute proximal deep vein thrombosis (DVT) who received PCDT in a multi-center randomized trial were reviewed. Quantitative thrombus resolution was assessed by independent readers using a modified Marder scale. The physician operators recorded their visual assessments of thrombus regression and venous flow. These immediate post-procedure results were correlated with patient outcomes at 1, 12, and 24 months.
PCDT produced substantial thrombus removal (P < .001 for pre-PCDT vs. post-PCDT thrombus scores in all segments). At procedure end, spontaneous venous flow was present in 99% of iliofemoral venous segments and in 89% of femoral-popliteal venous segments. For the overall proximal DVT population, and for the femoral-popliteal DVT subgroup, post-PCDT thrombus volume did not correlate with 1-month or 24-month outcomes. For the iliofemoral DVT subgroup, over 1 and 24 months, symptom severity scores were higher (worse), and venous disease-specific quality of life (QOL) scores were lower (worse) in patients with greater post-PCDT thrombus volume, with the difference reaching statistical significance for the 24-month Villalta post-thrombotic syndrome (PTS) severity score (P = .0098). Post-PCDT thrombus volume did not correlate with 12-month valvular reflux.
PCDT successfully removes thrombus in acute proximal DVT. However, the residual thrombus burden at procedure end does not correlate with the occurrence of PTS during the subsequent 24 months. In iliofemoral DVT, lower residual thrombus burden correlates with reduced PTS severity and possibly also with improved venous QOL and fewer early symptoms.

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