A thromboembolic disease has progressively led to the increase in mortality and morbidity. An inferior vena cava filter (IVC filter) proves to be one of the most effective methods that are currently used to prevent the occurrence of death as a result of the flow of emboli within the bloodstream. An embolus is a mass of clotted blood that gains access through blood vessels. Emboli can cause drastic negative effects on the body which include a collapse of the heart muscle and even death related to blockage of the vessels that supply blood to vital organs.
The procedure of inserting an IVC filter is performed through the use of radiological apparatus that aid in visualizing the insertion procedure. The filter is predominantly inserted via the jugular access or femoral vein.
It is highly indicated that the filter is placed in patients who are diagnosed with deep vein thrombosis or pulmonary embolism. The patients who have complications related to the use of anticoagulants are also needed urgent insertion of the filter. The filet aids by blocking the clots or emboli from gaining access to the heart or other vital organs thus leading to death.
The insertion of the IVC filter is however not advisable for patients who are found to have a deranged coagulation; total thrombosis of the inferior vena cava; bacteremia or sepsis; and those who have a diameter of the calva that is less than fifteen millimeters. Patients who have an eternal drain in the ventricle are not to have the filter inserted. Patients who are receiving anticoagulant therapy and possess deep vein thrombosis or pulmonary embolism are also not advised to use the filter in their vena cava.
There are two types of IVC filters exist that is the permanent (which is non-retrievable) and the temporary (which is retrievable). The permanent ones can never be retrieved or repositioned at any time while the temporary ones give an opportunity for retrieval and repositioning until an opportune time when it is no longer possible to do so. There have been many cases of improper retrieval of IVC filters and later this leads to deleterious effects on the life of the sick. Two main processes of insertion are employed that is the ultrasound-guided method and the fluoroscopy-guided method.
Before the insertion procedure is performed, appropriate patient information is collected with a valid signed consent of the surgery and other medical data Counselling is ideally performed and the patient is prepared for the procedure. Anesthesia is administered appropriately. Before the operation is performed, the patient is placed in a position that is appropriate for the insertion procedure to be performed. The skin of the neck is cleaned using povidone iodine or chlorhexidine. The procedure of insertion is then performed.
Some complication may result however from the procedure. The patient may bleed profusely for a very long time A pneumothorax may also result. Pulmonary embolism is also seen to occur in some patients. The filter may cause; inferior vena cava trauma in some cases; filter fracture; calva thrombosis; infections and even third-day mortalities.
The IVC filter is however crucial in the management of cardiovascular disease and has saved many lives. Understanding the procedure and its significance is of importance for anyone who wants to live a long healthy life while reducing the likelihood of thromboembolic disease.