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August 17, 1994

Asymptomatic Pulmonary Embolism Complicating Deep Venous Thrombosis

JAMA. 1994;272(7):517. doi:10.1001/jama.1994.03520070035027

To the Editor.  —I read with great interest the recent article from Dr Moser and colleagues1 about the diagnosis of PE in patients with DVT. I fully agree with the main conclusions of this study, especially that "patients admitted with [DVT] merit a lung scan as part of their initial evaluation" because venous thromboembolism is "indeed one entity."However, I disagree with the authors' statement that a systematic assessment of pulmonary perfusion in patients with DVT at the onset of treatment "has not been used in the past," and that an evaluation of the percentage of "embolic recurrences" during therapy, which only represent delayed expression of emboli present at admission, therefore was impossible. This approach (systematic assessment of the deep veins in patients with PE and systematic assessment of pulmonary perfusion in patients with DVT, whatever their symptoms) has been our institutional policy for more than 10 years, and

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