This website is intended to provide awareness and educational resources related to venous thromboembolism or VTE for the non-physician healthcare provider as well as patients. The goal is to lead prevention. It is essential for patients and healthcare providers to be knowledgeable of VTE and the associated risks, in order to understand the importance and role of prevention.

Venous Thromboembolism (VTE) = Deep Vein Thrombosis (DVT) and/or Pulmonary Embolism (PE)

Deep Vein Thrombosis or DVT: A blood clot that forms in a deep vein -- usually the leg or areas below the waist but can also occur in the arms.

Pulmonary Embolism or PE: A blood clot that travels to the lungs from another location.

VTE is a common preventable cause of in-hospital death, claiming more lives than breast cancer, acquired immune deficiency syndrome (AIDS), and highway fatalities combined.

Most hospitalized patients have at least one risk factor for VTE.

Safe and effective prevention strategies are available, but they are currently underutilized and/or used inappropriately.

Adverse events related to VTEs are common and problematic, leading to poor clinical outcomes and prolonged hospital stays.

Preventing VTE is a national and regional priority, and is an important patient safety problem.

Nurses are on the frontline in the prevention of VTE.

Nursing intervention can save lives through assessment of patient risk, vigilance in monitoring for signs and symptoms, and ensuring appropriate prophylaxis is administered.

Patients should become active partners in determining prevention strategies, and encouraged to self-report any signs and symptoms.

References: (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), 2013); (Kahn et al., 2012, Chest); (Morrison, 2006, J Vasc Nurs); (Maynard, 2008, AHRQ)