Phlegmasia cerulea dolens in a patient treated with carboplatin

Martin Söderman*, Peter Grimm

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review


Phlegmasia cerulea dolens (PCD) is a rare, fulminant, potentially lethal and often debilitating presentation of deep venous thrombosis (DVT). Mortality and amputations rates are high. We present a rare case of bilateral PCD in the lower extremities. A 67-year-old woman presented with newly diagnosed squamous cell cancer of unknown primary origin with lymph node metastases to the neck. The patient started curatively intended treatment, consisting of removal of one lymph node on the neck, radiotherapy with concomitant carboplatin and nimorazol. The patient developed bilateral DVT in the legs. Despite treatment with low-molecular-weight heparins, the patient developed thrombosis in the inferior vena cava and lungs. Due to developing painful discolouration and necrosis on the legs, the patient underwent acute and extensive surgery. PCD is a severe and potentially lethal form of DVT. There are several known risk factors for developing DVT, including active cancer and the use of chemotherapy.

Original languageEnglish
Article number233760
JournalBMJ Case Reports
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 14. Apr 2020


  • cancer intervention
  • surgery
  • venous thromboembolism


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