Long-term results of the Simon nitinol inferior vena cava filter
The aim of this study was to evaluate the clinical efficacy, mechanical stability, and safety of the Simon nitinol inferior vena cava filter (SNF). The SNF was inserted in 114 consecutive patients at two institutions for prophylaxis of pulmonary embolism (PE). Clinical follow-up data were obtained retrospectively on all patients, and 38 patients underwent a dedicated radiologic follow-up protocol consisting of abdominal radiography, Doppler sonography, and CT. There was no immediate complication following filter insertion. Fifty patients died, on average, 5.6 (1–23) months after filter insertion, and 64 patients were alive, on average, 27 (3–62) months after filter insertion. Recurrent pulmonary embolism was documented in 5 patients (4.4 %) but originated distal to the filter in 1 patient. Deep venous thrombosis (DVT) was documented in 5.3 %, thrombosis at the access site in 3.5 %, and thrombosis of the inferior vena cava in 3.5 %. The rate of thromboembolic complications was similar in patients who did receive long-term anticoagulation and in those who did not. Radiologic follow-up showed no filter migration after, on average, 32 (5–62) months. A CT examination showed that struts of the SNF had penetrated the vena cava in 95 %, and were in contact with adjacent organs in 76 %; however, there were no clinical symptoms attributable to the filter. Filters were in an eccentric position in 63 % and partial filter disruption was found in 16 %; however, this did not affect filter function. The rate of recurrent pulmonary embolism after insertion of the SNF is 2.4 % per patient per year. Regardless of long-term anticoagulation, the rate of caval thrombosis is acceptably low. Except for occasional access-site thrombosis, no other filter-related morbidity was observed.
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