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      We, of course, are concerned about selection bias and immortal time bias,
      • Lévesque L.E.
      • Hanley J.A.
      • Kezouh A.
      • Suissa S.
      Problem of immortal time bias in cohort studies: example using statins for preventing progression of diabetes.
      and a cautious interpretation is appropriate. However, it is important to obtain as much evidence as possible by observational trials.
      • Goldhaber S.Z.
      Requiem for liberalizing indications for vena caval filters?.
      Unsupportable costs prevent the performance of a randomized controlled trial of inferior vena cava (IVC) filters in stable patients with pulmonary embolism who receive thrombolytic therapy.
      Unstable patients in our investigation were defined in the Methods as those in shock or on ventilator support.
      • Stein P.D.
      • Matta F.
      • Hughes M.J.
      Inferior vena cava filters in stable patients with acute pulmonary embolism who receive thrombolytic therapy.
      Such patients, as indicated in the Methods, were identified on the basis of International Classification of Diseases, Ninth Revision, Clinical Modification codes, which are shown in Table 1.
      • Stein P.D.
      • Matta F.
      • Hughes M.J.
      Inferior vena cava filters in stable patients with acute pulmonary embolism who receive thrombolytic therapy.
      Our investigation was a retrospective cohort study, not a case-control study.
      • Mann C.J.
      Observational research methods. Research design II: cohort, cross sectional, and case-control studies.
      The use of relative risk, therefore, was appropriate.
      • Mann C.J.
      Observational research methods. Research design II: cohort, cross sectional, and case-control studies.
      • Zhang J.
      • Yu K.F.
      What's the relative risk? A method of correcting the odds ratio in cohort studies of common outcomes.
      • Viera A.J.
      Odds ratios and risk ratios: what's the difference and why does it matter?.
      The term “relative risk” is also called “risk ratio.”,
      • Viera A.J.
      Odds ratios and risk ratios: what's the difference and why does it matter?.
      • Schechtman E.
      Odds ratio, relative risk, absolute risk reduction, and the number needed to treat–which of these should we use?.
      Whether we use the term “relative risk” or “risk ratio,” therefore, is of no consequence.
      It is recommended that absolute risk reduction should be reported together with relative risk.
      • Schechtman E.
      Odds ratio, relative risk, absolute risk reduction, and the number needed to treat–which of these should we use?.
      Absolute risk reduction has a clear meaning and is appealing to the practitioner.
      • Schechtman E.
      Odds ratio, relative risk, absolute risk reduction, and the number needed to treat–which of these should we use?.
      The use of number needed to treat has also been encouraged.
      • Schechtman E.
      Odds ratio, relative risk, absolute risk reduction, and the number needed to treat–which of these should we use?.
      The number needed to treat is an absolute measure, as is absolute risk reduction, and both a relative and absolute measure should be reported to portray a more complete picture.
      • Schechtman E.
      Odds ratio, relative risk, absolute risk reduction, and the number needed to treat–which of these should we use?.
      There is no reason to reserve absolute risk and number needed to treat for prospective randomized trials.
      Regarding external validity, the investigations cited by Dr. Bergl are not relevant to our investigation. The investigation by Bikdeli et al
      • Bikdeli B.
      • Wang Y.
      • Minges K.E.
      • et al.
      Vena caval filter utilization and outcomes in pulmonary embolism: Medicare hospitalizations from 1999 to 2010.
      of IVC filters in Medicare patients did not address the subset of patients who received thrombolytic therapy. The investigation by Meyer et al
      • Meyer G.
      • Vicaut E.
      • Danays T.
      • et al.
      Fibrinolysis for patients with intermediate-risk pulmonary embolism.
      of fibrinolysis for patients with intermediate-risk pulmonary embolism was not powered to detect differences in rates of death. The prospective randomized trial by Mismetti et al
      • Mismetti P.
      • Laporte S.
      • Pellerin O.
      • et al.
      Effect of a retrievable inferior vena cava filter plus anticoagulation vs anticoagulation alone on risk of recurrent pulmonary embolism: a randomized clinical trial.
      of the effect of retrievable IVC filters plus anticoagulation vs anticoagulation alone did not address the subset of patients who received thrombolytic therapy.

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