deep vein thrombosis (DVT), risk factors, screening, venous thromboembolism (VTE)



  1. Race, Tara Kay BSN, RN, CCRN
  2. Collier, Paul E. MD


Deep vein thrombosis (DVT) is a very serious, potentially fatal, and very preventable medical condition. It is important for all patients admitted to the hospital to be screened for the risk of developing a DVT. This could be easily accomplished by performing a risk factor assessment-screening tool on all patients. It is also important to educate the medical and nursing staff on the fact that all patients are at risk for developing DVT, not just surgical patients who are often believed to be at the highest risk of DVT. The implementation of the risk factor assessment could potentially save lives and reduce the hospital costs of treating and managing the complications of DVT and venous thromboembolic disease. The cases chosen for review in this article will demonstrate many risk factors that often go overlooked in nonsurgical patients. The implementation of a risk factor assessment tool could potentially aid in the recognition and appropriate prophylaxis of those patients who are at extremely high risk for DVT. Without appropriate recognition of the risk for DVT, patients may be placed at risk for DVT and the potentially fatal and/or debilitating complications associated with the development of DVT.