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Patrick P. McHugh, Thomas D. Johnston, Roberto Gedaly, Hoonbae Jeon, Dinesh Ranjan
Ann Transplant 2008; 13(3): 19-22
Background: Patients with acute massive pulmonary embolus have a high mortality even with treatment. For patients in whom thrombolytic intervention is contraindicated, surgical pulmonary embolectomy is a viable option.
Case Report: We present a patient who, four months after kidney transplantation, developed acute massive PE with cardiac arrest. He underwent surgical pulmonary embolectomy and was discharged two weeks later, with preservation of renal allograft function and long-term survival.
Conclusions: While the mortality risk of surgical embolectomy is high, survival has been greatly improved by the use of cardiopulmonary bypass. Early diagnosis and initiation of aggressive treatment is vital to achieving successful outcomes in patients who would otherwise be unsalvageable.