Superficial thrombophlebitis

Semin Cutan Med Surg. 2007 Jun;26(2):71-6. doi: 10.1016/j.sder.2007.02.002.


Superficial thrombophlebitis (STP) is a common disease usually characterized by an auto-resolving vasculitis of medium-sized veins of the upper subcutis or deep dermis that clinically manifests as a tender or painful palpable cord-like structure. It usually occurs in the setting of varicous veins, or hypercoagulable states, and may be the alarm signal for an underlining silent cancer. STP mainly involves the legs, but special locations, including the anterior chest wall or the penis, characterize specific clinical forms (Mondor's disease). The clinical signs and symptoms usually allow an easy diagnosis, but complementary techniques and biopsy are sometimes required. The main histopathologic differential diagnosis of STP is cutaneous polyarteritis nodosa.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Diagnosis, Differential
  • Humans
  • Thrombophlebitis / diagnosis*
  • Thrombophlebitis / pathology
  • Thrombophlebitis / therapy*