Background: Pulmonary embolism is a significant cause of morbidity and death after operation. The introduction of new technologies in the diagnosis, and thrombolysis in the treatment, of pulmonary embolism has led to a need to reappraise the management of this condition.
Methods: This review encompasses a comprehensive discussion of diagnostic modalities and therapeutic strategies used in the current management of pulmonary embolism. Relevant papers on the diagnosis and treatment of pulmonary embolism were identified from a Medline search for the period 1967-1998. Additional papers were derived from the reference lists of retrieved articles. Articles presenting prospectively gathered data have been referenced preferentially.
Results and conclusion: Algorithms for the diagnosis and treatment of pulmonary embolism are presented.