JOURNAL ARTICLE
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Cardiac Arrest Secondary to Bilateral Pulmonary Emboli following Arteriovenous Fistula Thrombectomy: A Case Report with Review of the Literature.

Number of patients with End Stage Renal Disease (ESRD) is growing worldwide. Hemodialysis remains the main modality of renal replacement therapy for ESRD patients. A patent hemodialysis access (arteriovenous fistula or arteriovenous graft) plays a key role in successful delivery of hemodialysis. Common vascular access issues encountered by patients and nephrologists are thrombosis and infection. The thrombosed access is declotted by various percutaneous techniques these days by multiple outpatient access centers in a timely fashion. Thrombolysis can give rise to various complications, a few of which can be life threatening. A young hemodialysis patient underwent percutaneous thrombolysis of his clotted arteriovenous fistula. Outpatient access thrombectomy was complicated immediately afterwards with cardiac arrest requiring cardiac resuscitation in the recovery room. The patient was admitted to intensive care unit after life sustaining care. Work up revealed multiple pulmonary emboli to both lung fields on CT scan of the chest. Patient was anticoagulated and discharged from the hospital. Thrombolysis of clotted hemodialysis access is associated commonly with occurrences of pulmonary embolic which are usually asymptomatic. Massive pulmonary embolization due to access thrombolysis is rare. Nephrologists and radiologists should be aware of this dangerous complication particularly in patients with preexisting cardiopulmonary disease.

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