We are independent & ad-supported. We may earn a commission for purchases made through our links.

Advertiser Disclosure

Our website is an independent, advertising-supported platform. We provide our content free of charge to our readers, and to keep it that way, we rely on revenue generated through advertisements and affiliate partnerships. This means that when you click on certain links on our site and make a purchase, we may earn a commission. Learn more.

How We Make Money

We sustain our operations through affiliate commissions and advertising. If you click on an affiliate link and make a purchase, we may receive a commission from the merchant at no additional cost to you. We also display advertisements on our website, which help generate revenue to support our work and keep our content free for readers. Our editorial team operates independently from our advertising and affiliate partnerships to ensure that our content remains unbiased and focused on providing you with the best information and recommendations based on thorough research and honest evaluations. To remain transparent, we’ve provided a list of our current affiliate partners here.

What is Pulmonary Thromboendarterectomy?

Tricia Christensen
Updated May 17, 2024
Our promise to you
WiseGEEK is dedicated to creating trustworthy, high-quality content that always prioritizes transparency, integrity, and inclusivity above all else. Our ensure that our content creation and review process includes rigorous fact-checking, evidence-based, and continual updates to ensure accuracy and reliability.

Our Promise to you

Founded in 2002, our company has been a trusted resource for readers seeking informative and engaging content. Our dedication to quality remains unwavering—and will never change. We follow a strict editorial policy, ensuring that our content is authored by highly qualified professionals and edited by subject matter experts. This guarantees that everything we publish is objective, accurate, and trustworthy.

Over the years, we've refined our approach to cover a wide range of topics, providing readers with reliable and practical advice to enhance their knowledge and skills. That's why millions of readers turn to us each year. Join us in celebrating the joy of learning, guided by standards you can trust.

Editorial Standards

At WiseGEEK, we are committed to creating content that you can trust. Our editorial process is designed to ensure that every piece of content we publish is accurate, reliable, and informative.

Our team of experienced writers and editors follows a strict set of guidelines to ensure the highest quality content. We conduct thorough research, fact-check all information, and rely on credible sources to back up our claims. Our content is reviewed by subject matter experts to ensure accuracy and clarity.

We believe in transparency and maintain editorial independence from our advertisers. Our team does not receive direct compensation from advertisers, allowing us to create unbiased content that prioritizes your interests.

Pulmonary thromboendarterectomy is a surgical procedure designed to remove blood clots that have formed in the lungs and that are causing conditions like high pressure in the lungs (pulmonary hypertension) and failure of the right side of the heart. This surgery is complex and still only performed at a few medical centers. Studies on it, dating back the 1970s, and those released from University of California-San Diego, where the procedure has been championed and most often performed, suggest it may be a relatively successful method of blood clot removal for certain people. Due to the fact that not all medical centers perform it, those seeking a pulmonary thromboendarterectomy, do need to utilize a hospital that is expert in treating this condition.

When surgeons contemplate pulmonary thromboendarterectomy for a patient, they face a lengthy procedure that requires exceptional precision. This surgery uses on and off control of heart lung bypass to stop heart function and blood flow so that clots, which can be very large and numerous, can be extracted. A typical surgery of this type, which is an open chest procedure, takes about eight hours to perform and requires multiple inductions of arrest or stopping the heart, in order to access all blood clots.

While pulmonary thromboendarterectomy sounds dangerous, at those centers where it is performed most often, surgeons boast of low mortality rates. UC San Diego, for instance has 95.5% survival rage for the surgery. They especially compare this to other potential treatments for formation of numerous clots, such as lung transplant. From any standpoint, UC San Diego’s survival rate is much higher than lung transplant survival rate, and when the procedure is successful it is almost a complete cure of the condition. Many people do have to remain on blood thinners like warfarin (Coumadin®) for life, to prevent the formation of more clots or stroke.

It should be noted that not all centers have the same survival rate statistics for pulmonary thromboendarterectomy. If the procedure is suggested at any hospitals, patients should inquire about number of procedures performed and rate of success. These figures at most hospitals may be relatively low, and many people travel to a hospital with greater experience if they want this procedure done.

Potential for total cure is the most exciting thing about pulmonary thromboendarterectomy. Given a successfully performed surgery, many people are able to fully resume life, where before they may have been exceptionally ill due to compromised lungs or failure of the right heart. Medical literature appears to view findings of hospitals like San Diego with favor, and it’s quite possible that in the future this surgery may become more common.

WiseGEEK is dedicated to providing accurate and trustworthy information. We carefully select reputable sources and employ a rigorous fact-checking process to maintain the highest standards. To learn more about our commitment to accuracy, read our editorial process.
Tricia Christensen
By Tricia Christensen , Writer
With a Literature degree from Sonoma State University and years of experience as a WiseGEEK contributor, Tricia Christensen is based in Northern California and brings a wealth of knowledge and passion to her writing. Her wide-ranging interests include reading, writing, medicine, art, film, history, politics, ethics, and religion, all of which she incorporates into her informative articles. Tricia is currently working on her first novel.

Discussion Comments

Tricia Christensen

Tricia Christensen


With a Literature degree from Sonoma State University and years of experience as a WiseGEEK contributor, Tricia...
Read more
WiseGEEK, in your inbox

Our latest articles, guides, and more, delivered daily.

WiseGEEK, in your inbox

Our latest articles, guides, and more, delivered daily.