May 27, 2010

Superficial Thrombophlebitis

Longitudinal US image of the antecubital fossa shows an echogenic clot in the basilic vein (arrows).

Facts: Superficial Thrombophlebitis
  • Also known as superficial venous thrombosis
  • Presence of thrombus in the lumen of superficial vein, followed by inflammation of the wall and adjacent tissues
  • Variable degree of severity, can be in small venous tributaries but can extend into deep veins or, uncommonly, result in pulmonary embolism
  • Related to Virchow's triad
  • Prodromes of many systemic diseases (neoplasm, arteriopathy, collagen vascular disease) and syndromes (Trousseau, Mondor disease, Lemierre, Buerger disease)

  • Color Doppler US provides definitive diagnosis by showing clot, uncompressibility, absence of flow

Sobreira ML, Yoshida WB, Lastoria S. Superficial thrombophlebitis: epidemiology, physiopathology, diagnosis and treatment. J Vasc Bras 2008;7. Available here.

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