Rationale:Postpartum deep vein thrombosis is a unique condition in diagnosis and treatment. Rivaroxaban, a novel oral anticoagulant, is indicated for acute deep vein thrombosis, but limited data have been reported for postpartum women. Catheter-directed thrombolysis is a common procedure for treating acute deep vein thrombosis, but it is rarely used for postpartum patients, especially after more than 3 months.Patient concerns:A 31-year-old Asian woman suffered from progressive erythematous swelling and local heat of the left lower limb after twin delivery.Diagnoses:Venous duplex ultrasound examination showed thrombus formation in the left femoral vein and popliteal vein with reduced compressibility. After standard treatment of novel oral anticoagulant therapy for 4 months, we observed only partial improvement of the symptoms, and the condition deteriorated after her ordinary activities.Interventions:Venography was performed and a large amount of thrombus lining from left femoral vein to left iliac vein was noted with total occluded left common iliac vein. After catheter-directed thrombolysis and balloon dilatation, better flow was regained and her symptoms improved completely after procedure.Outcomes:During a 1-year follow-up without medication, the patient did not complain about leg swelling, exercise aggravation, or any other post-thrombotic symptoms.Lessons:Pregnancy seems to be a transient provoking factor for deep vein thrombosis, but it is sometimes refractory even during the postpartum period.Follow-up imaging studies should be encouraged to confirm the vessel condition, particularly for applying down-titration or discontinuation strategies of medication.Catheter-directed thrombolysis could be considered as an alternative method for postpartum iliofemoral deep vein thrombosis. Postpartum women usually have favorable functional status and lower bleeding risk.Rivaroxaban is a favorable choice for deep vein thrombosis, but its use in postpartum women is still controversial, and evidence of its effectiveness is not available. Thus, endovascular intervention can be a relatively safe therapy, in addition to anticoagulation therapy for premenopausal patients with recurrent deep vein thrombosis.
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