The use of retrievable inferior vena cava filters in pregnancy: Another successful case report, but are we actually making a difference?

Lodewyk E. Du Plessis, Ben W. Mol, John M. Svigos

Research output: Contribution to journalReview ArticleOtherpeer-review

2 Citations (Scopus)


Background: Pregnant women with venous thromboembolism are traditionally managed with anticoagulation, but inferior vena cava filters are an alternative. We balanced risks and benefits of an inferior vena cava filter in a decision analysis. Methods: We constructed a decision model to compare in pregnant women with VTE the outcome of (1) inferior vena cava filter and anticoagulant treatment versus (2) anticoagulant treatment only. Results: Assuming a 63% risk reduction from an inferior vena cava filter (baseline mortality rate of venous thromboembolism of 0.5%), 318 women would need to be treated with inferior vena cava filters to prevent one venous thromboembolism related maternal death. Sensitivity analyses indicated that at a mortality rate of 0.5% the risk reduction from inferior vena cava filters needed to be 80%, while at a mortality rate of 2% a risk reduction of 20% would justify inferior vena cava filters. Conclusions: In view of their potential morbidity, inferior vena cava filters should be restricted to pregnant woman at strongly increased risk of recurrent venous thromboembolism.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)102-105
Number of pages4
JournalObstetric Medicine
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 1 Sep 2016
Externally publishedYes


  • clinical decision analysis
  • inferior vena cava filters
  • Pregnancy
  • venous thromboembolism

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