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Venous Thromboembolism (VTE)

UPMC in central Pa. is committed to reducing complications that can be acquired while in the hospital, such as venous thromboembolism (VTE), or blood clots.

VTE is most commonly a deep vein thrombosis (DVT), which occurs when a blood clot forms in one of the large veins, usually in the legs, leading to either partially or completely blocked circulation. If left untreated, this clot has the potential to move into the lungs and produce a pulmonary embolism (PE) requiring immediate medical attention.

Although preventable, almost 300,000 Americans die annually from DVT and/or PE. Some patients develop pulmonary embolism unrelated to DVT.

Processes in place at UPMC in central Pa. to prevent DVT and PE include:

  • Screening all incoming patients for their risk of VTE
  • Patients at risk for VTE are given preventive measures such as blood-thinning medications and mechanical air filled sleeves that help with blood flow in the legs.
  • Measures to prevent VTE are continued after surgery

As a result, the incidence of VTE decreased.

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If you have questions about UPMC in central Pa.'s quality information or data, please contact our Performance Improvement Department at 717-231-8469.

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