Article Text

Download PDFPDF
Case report
Phlegmasia cerulea dolens in a patient treated with carboplatin
  1. Martin Söderman1,2 and
  2. Peter Grimm3
  1. 1Department of Plastic and Breast Surgery, Aarhus University Hospital, Aarhus, Denmark
  2. 2Department of Plastic Surgery, Odense University Hospital, Odense, Denmark
  3. 3Department of Oncology, Odense University Hospital, Odense, Denmark
  1. Correspondence to Dr Martin Söderman; soderman.martin{at}


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.

  • venous thromboembolism
  • cancer intervention
  • surgery

Statistics from

Request Permissions

If you wish to reuse any or all of this article please use the link below which will take you to the Copyright Clearance Center’s RightsLink service. You will be able to get a quick price and instant permission to reuse the content in many different ways.


  • Contributors MS: the idea, taking and processing pictures and writing the draft. MS and PG: planning/design, data acquisition, reviewing and revising the manuscript. PG: the case presentation.

  • Funding The authors have not declared a specific grant for this research from any funding agency in the public, commercial or not-for-profit sectors.

  • Competing interests None declared.

  • Patient consent for publication Obtained.

  • Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; externally peer reviewed.