Venous thromboembolism (VTE), including pulmonary embolism and deep venous thrombosis, is the third most common cause of cardiovascular death. The management of the acute phase of VTE has already been described in several guidelines. However, the management of the follow-up (FU) of these patients has been poorly defined. This consensus document, created by the Italian cardiologists, wants to clarify this issue using the currently available evidence in VTE. Clinical and instrumental data acquired during the acute phase of the disease are the cornerstone for planning the FU. Acquired or congenital thrombophilic disorders could be identified in apparently unprovoked VTE during the FU. In other cases, an occult cancer could be discovered after a VTE. The main targets of the post-acute management are to prevent recurrence of VTE and to identify the patients who can develop a chronic thromboembolic pulmonary hypertension. Knowledge of pathophysiology and therapeutic approaches is fundamental to decide the most appropriate long-term treatment. Moreover, prognostic stratification during the FU should be constantly updated on the basis of the new evidence acquired. Currently, the cornerstone of VTE treatment is represented by both the oral and the parenteral anticoagulation. Novel oral anticoagulants should be an interesting alternative in the long-term treatment.
- Journal Article