Statewide Inferior Vena Cava Filter Placement, Complications, and Retrievals: Epidemiology and Recent Trends

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Background:Public awareness of inferior vena cava (IVC) filter-related controversies has been elevated by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) safety communication in 2010.Objectives:To examine population level trends in IVC filter utilization, complications, retrieval rates, and subsequent pulmonary embolism (PE) risk.Design:A retrospective cohort study.Subjects:Patients receiving IVC filters during 2005–2014 in New York State.Measures:IVC filter-specific complications, new PE occurrences and IVC filter retrievals were evaluated as time-to-event data using Kaplan-Meier analysis. Estimated cumulative risks were obtained at various timepoints during follow-up.Results:There were 91,873 patients receiving IVC filters between 2005 and 2014 in New York State included in the study. The average patient age was 67 years and 46.6% were male. Age-adjusted rates of IVC filter placement increased from 48 cases/100,000 in 2005 to 52 cases/100,000 in 2009, and decreased afterwards to 36 cases/100,000 in 2014. The estimated risks of having an IVC filter-related complication and filter retrieval within 1 year was 1.5% [95% confidence interval (CI), 1.4%–1.6%] and 3.5% (95% CI, 3.4%–3.6%). One-year retrieval rate was higher post-2010 when compared with pre-2010 years (hazard ratio, 2.70; 95% CI, 2.50–2.91). Among the 58,176 patients who did not have PE events before or at the time of IVC filter placement, the estimated risk of developing subsequent PE at 1 year was 2.0% (95% CI, 1.9%–2.1%).Conclusions:Our findings suggest that FDA communications may be effective in modifying statewide clinical practices. Given the 2% observed PE rate following prophylactic IVC filter placement, large scale pragmatic studies are needed to determine contemporary safety and effectiveness of IVC filters.

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