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Hyperviscosity Syndrome Follow-up

  • Author: Thomas J Hemingway, MD, FACEP; Chief Editor: Barry E Brenner, MD, PhD, FACEP  more...
Updated: Nov 23, 2015

Further Inpatient Care

Supportive care should be initiated for the complications of hyperviscosity syndrome, pending definitive therapy. Complications to address may include blood loss, central nervous system disorders, cardiovascular effects, and metabolic derangements.

Note that the definitive treatment of hyperviscosity syndrome is treatment of the underlying disorder (eg, chemotherapy). If the underlying disease process is left untreated, the hyperviscosity will recur.



Consider transfer if hematology/oncology consultation and plasma or cellular pheresis are unavailable at the treating facility.



The prognosis in patients with hyperviscosity syndrome depends on the severity of the associated complications, and on the underlying cause of the syndrome and the response of the appropriate definitive treatment. For example, the long-term prognosis for patients with multiple myeloma continues to be poor.


Patient Education

See the list below:

  • The diseases leading to hyperviscosity are chronic, and this condition may recur.
  • Patients and their families and/or caregivers should be educated about early signs and symptoms (eg, bleeding, visual symptoms, headache, mental status changes, shortness of breath).
Contributor Information and Disclosures

Thomas J Hemingway, MD, FACEP Attending Physician, Department of Emergency Medicine, Wilcox Memorial Hospital

Thomas J Hemingway, MD, FACEP is a member of the following medical societies: American College of Emergency Physicians

Disclosure: Nothing to disclose.


Douglas F Kupas, MD Associate Chief Academic Officer, Geisinger Health System; Assistant Dean for Medical Student Affairs, Temple University Geisinger Clinical Campus; Commonwealth EMS Medical Director, Pennsylvania Department of Health

Douglas F Kupas, MD is a member of the following medical societies: American College of Emergency Physicians, National Association of EMS Physicians, Society for Academic Emergency Medicine

Disclosure: Securisyn Medical - serve on Advisory Board and own shares (<5%).

Eric Alexander Savitsky, MD Associate Clinical Professor of Medicine, Department of Medicine, Division of Emergency Medicine, University of California at Los Angeles Medical Center

Eric Alexander Savitsky, MD is a member of the following medical societies: Society for Academic Emergency Medicine

Disclosure: Nothing to disclose.

Specialty Editor Board

Francisco Talavera, PharmD, PhD Adjunct Assistant Professor, University of Nebraska Medical Center College of Pharmacy; Editor-in-Chief, Medscape Drug Reference

Disclosure: Received salary from Medscape for employment. for: Medscape.

Jeffrey L Arnold, MD, FACEP Chairman, Department of Emergency Medicine, Santa Clara Valley Medical Center

Jeffrey L Arnold, MD, FACEP is a member of the following medical societies: American Academy of Emergency Medicine, American College of Physicians

Disclosure: Nothing to disclose.

Chief Editor

Barry E Brenner, MD, PhD, FACEP Professor of Emergency Medicine, Professor of Internal Medicine, Program Director for Emergency Medicine, Case Medical Center, University Hospitals, Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine

Barry E Brenner, MD, PhD, FACEP is a member of the following medical societies: Alpha Omega Alpha, American Heart Association, American Thoracic Society, Arkansas Medical Society, New York Academy of Medicine, New York Academy of Sciences, Society for Academic Emergency Medicine, American Academy of Emergency Medicine, American College of Chest Physicians, American College of Emergency Physicians, American College of Physicians

Disclosure: Nothing to disclose.

Additional Contributors

Robin R Hemphill, MD, MPH Associate Professor, Director, Quality and Safety, Department of Emergency Medicine, Emory University School of Medicine

Robin R Hemphill, MD, MPH is a member of the following medical societies: American College of Emergency Physicians, Society for Academic Emergency Medicine

Disclosure: Nothing to disclose.

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