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Clinical update on pulmonary embolism
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Submission date: 2012-05-01
Final revision date: 2012-09-13
Acceptance date: 2012-11-29
Online publication date: 2013-05-07
Publication date: 2014-06-30
Arch Med Sci 2014;10(3):557-565
Pulmonary embolism (PE) is a major cause of cardiovascular mortality and financial burden that affects the community. The diagnosis of PE can be difficult because of the nonspecific symptoms, which include cough, dyspnea, hemoptysis and pleuritic chest pain. Hereditary and acquired risk factors are associated with PE. Incidence of PE is increasing, associated with the development in the diagnostic methods. Evidence-based algorithms can help clinicians diagnose PE. Serum D-dimer level, computed tomography pulmonary angiogram (CTPA), ventilation-perfusion scintigraphy or echocardiography help to establish clinical probability and the severity of PE. Anticoagulation is the standard treatment for PE. However, thrombolytic treatment is a significant alternative in high risk of PE as it provides rapid clot resolution. This article reviews the risk factors, diagnostic algorithms, and methods of treatment in PE in the light of current information.
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