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Prevention and treatment of venous thromboembolism in older people

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  01 August 2008

A Veiraiah
Cardiff and Vale NHS Trust, Cardiff, Wales, UK
HGM Shetty
Cardiff and Vale NHS Trust, Cardiff, Wales, UK
PA Routledge
Cardiff University, Wales, UK
E-mail address:


The incidence of deep vein thrombosis (DVT) and pulmonary embolism (PE), collectively called venous thromboembolism (VTE), increases with age and has been reported to be higher in males. The annual incidence rates per 1000 for DVT and PE are 1.3 and 1.8, respectively, for people aged between 65 and 69 years, rising to 2.8 and 3.1, respectively, in those aged between 85 and 89 years. Older people are about eight times more likely to develop VTE in hospitals, nursing homes or other chronic care facilities than younger adults. About 1.7% develop PE within one year of treatment for DVT, whilst the one year recurrence rate for PE was 8.0%. About 3% of patients with DVT and 21% of those with PE die in hospital. One year mortality with DVT is 21% and that with PE is 39%.

Clinical geriatrics
Copyright © Cambridge University Press 2009

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