Causes and management of superior vena cava syndrome

C P Escalante
Oncology (Williston Park, NY) 1993, 7 (6): 61-8; discussion 71-2, 75-7
Superior vena cava syndrome is today primarily a disease associated with malignancy. Thrombosis of the superior vena cava associated with the use of intravascular devices or extraluminal obstruction from malignancy is now recognized as an important pathophysiologic process in the syndrome. Irradiation has long been the mainstay of treatment. Newer treatments include more effective chemotherapy for certain cancers such as lymphoma and small-cell carcinoma, fibrinolytics to treat thrombosis, and interventional radiologic techniques. Expandable metallic stents have been shown to improve the quality of life for patients who, in the past, quickly succumbed to the disease process. Current management stresses the importance of accurate diagnosis of the underlying etiology before treatment. Only under extreme emergent conditions such as laryngeal or cerebral edema should irradiation proceed without a diagnosis. Future studies should address the role of anticoagulant therapy and the timing of interventional techniques in relation to radiation or chemotherapy.

Full Text Links

Find Full Text Links for this Article


You are not logged in. Sign Up or Log In to join the discussion.

Trending Papers

Remove bar
Read by QxMD icon Read

Save your favorite articles in one place with a free QxMD account.


Search Tips

Use Boolean operators: AND/OR

diabetic AND foot
diabetes OR diabetic

Exclude a word using the 'minus' sign

Virchow -triad

Use Parentheses

water AND (cup OR glass)

Add an asterisk (*) at end of a word to include word stems

Neuro* will search for Neurology, Neuroscientist, Neurological, and so on

Use quotes to search for an exact phrase

"primary prevention of cancer"
(heart or cardiac or cardio*) AND arrest -"American Heart Association"