Stretch Away from Pain

Exercise to treat post-thrombotic syndrome

/ Author:  / Reviewed by: Joseph V. Madia, MD

(RxWiki News) Researchers may have found a new method to treat post-thrombotic syndrome.

Chronic post-thrombotic syndrome, which affects about one half of patients with deep vein thrombosis (DVT), can cause leg pain, heaviness, swelling, water retention, hyperpigmentation, varicose veins, and leg ulcers. 

According to results from a pilot trial by Dr. Susan Kahn of McGill University and her coauthors, a six-month exercise program focusing on leg strength, flexibility, and overall fitness might reduce the symptoms associated with post-thrombotic syndrome. However, the authors warn that "the findings of [the] small trial should be interpreted with caution and require confirmation in a larger study." Only 39 patients completed the study, most of whom were part of a young, well-educated demographic.

In their research article, which is published in the Canadian Medical Association Journal, the authors state that effective treatments for post-thrombotic syndrome are lacking and thus new approaches are needed. They conclude that exercise training should be evaluated further in future clinical trials.

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Review Date: 
November 22, 2010
Last Updated:
November 23, 2010