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Paradoxical thromboembolism refers to thromboembolism originating in venous circulation which traverses directly into systemic circulation in the presence of an intracardiac (such as patent foramen ovale) or pulmonary shunt. Can have variable clinical presentation depending on site of embolization – Embolic stroke: neurological deficits – Intestinal ischemia: abdominal pain – Peripheral arterial embolization: acute limb pain – Renal infarct: flank pain and hematuria.
Simultaneous arterial and venous thrombosis requires hypercoagulable workup, including investigation for malignancy, infection, or thrombophilia. Rarely, venous thromboembolism can directly cause arterial thrombosis by paradoxical embolization. Renal infarction is rare. Usually presents as acute abdominal pain and AKI in patients with risk factors for thrombosis. High index of suspicion is crucial for timely diagnosis given patients may benefit from percutaneous endovascular therapy, if indicated.
paradoxical embolism, abdominal pain, renal infarction
Aggarwal N, Rector Dn, Lazar N, Khreisat A, Bukovec F. Paradoxical embolism: renal infarct presenting as abdominal pain. American College of Physicians Michigan Chapter Annual Scientific Meeting; 2022 Oct 13-16; Bellaire, MI.