Deep vein thrombosis and pulmonary embolism after heart transplantation

Atsushi Kainuma, Yuming Ning, Paul A. Kurlansky, Amy S. Wang, Farhana Latif, Maryjane A. Farr, Gabriel T. Sayer, Nir Uriel, Hiroo Takayama, Yoshifumi Naka, Koji Takeda

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Introduction: Venous thromboembolism (VTE), such as deep vein thrombosis (DVT) and pulmonary embolism (PE), is an important and serious postoperative complication after heart transplantation. We sought to characterize in-hospital VTE after heart transplantation and its association with clinical outcomes. Method: Adult (≧18 years) patients undergoing heart transplantation from 2015 to 2019 at our center were retrospectively reviewed. Post-transplant VTE was defined as newly diagnosed venous system thrombus by imaging studies. Results: There were 254 patients. The cohort's median age was 55 years. A total of 61 patients were diagnosed with VTE, including one with right atrial thrombus, 54 with upper extremity DVT in which one patient subsequently developed PE, four with lower extremity DVT, and two with upper and lower extremity DVT. The cumulative incidence of VTE was 42% at 60-days of post heart transplant. Patients with VTE had longer hospital stay (P <.001), higher in-hospital mortality (P =.010), and worse 5-year survival (P =.009). On the multivariable Cox analysis, history of DVT/PE and intubation for more than 3 days were associated with an increased risk of in hospital VTE. Conclusion: The incidence of VTE in heart transplant recipients is high. Post-transplant surveillance, and appropriate preventive measures and treatment strategies after diagnosis are warranted.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalClinical Transplantation
StateAccepted/In press - 2022
Externally publishedYes


  • deep vein thrombosis
  • orthotopic heart transplantation
  • perioperative care
  • venous thromboembolism

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Transplantation


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