High preoperative prevalence of deep venous thrombosis in patients with colorectal cancer




Deep venous thrombosis (DVT) is a major complication of cancer and a predictor of reduced survival. The postoperative prevalence of DVT in colorectal cancer surgery is high, but the preoperative prevalence is unknown. The aim of this observational study was to estimate the preoperative prevalence of DVT in patients with colorectal cancer.


Some 193 consecutive patients with newly diagnosed colorectal cancer admitted for intended curative surgery were examined with compression ultrasonography for DVT before surgery.


DVT was detected in 15 (7·8 per cent) of the 193 patients, with a prevalence of 16 per cent in women (12 of 76) versus 2·6 per cent in men (three of 117 (adjusted odds ratio (OR) 5·8 (95 per cent confidence interval (c.i.) 1·4 to 23·2)). The risk of DVT was strongly correlated with increasing American Society of Anesthesiologists (ASA) risk score: adjusted OR 6·8 (95 per cent c.i. 1·6 to 28·7 for ASA group III or IV versus ASA group I or II). Pulmonary embolism was detected in two patients (1·0 per cent).


A high preoperative prevalence of DVT was observed in patients with colorectal cancer, especially among women and patients in ASA groups III and IV. Copyright © 2007 British Journal of Surgery Society Ltd. Published by John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.