Patient Comments: Superior Vena Cava Syndrome - Symptoms


What were the symptoms experienced with superior vena cava syndrome in you or a relative? Submit Your Comment

Comment from: White2, 55-64 Male (Caregiver) Published: March 17

My husband has the facial plethora and trouble breathing. Come to find out he has SVC (superior vena cava syndrome) and small cell lung cancer stage 3. We are also waiting for biopsy results due to small nodules on the left and right adrenal glands. He is a 55 year old male doing chemotherapy, radiation, and possibly autoimmune medicines.

Comment from: Maggie, 65-74 Female (Patient) Published: August 15

I had atrial fibrillations and had 3 ablations but on the last one I found I also had superior vena cava syndrome from pacemaker leads. My symptoms were coughing, swelling of face and upper torso, if I bent over I would lose my breath and get dizzy, and shortness of breath. I couldn’t lie flat I felt smothered, and finally I was passing out. They did venogram which is the only test that showed it, and I was 98 percent occluded.

Comment from: Sandra, 35-44 Female (Patient) Published: July 19

I had a strange lightheadedness that would come and go. It would be especially bad if I bent over. I was exhausted by 6 pm. I couldn't climb a flight of stairs without feeling winded. Then I had soft swelling on the right side of my neck and the vein on my left neck seemed to protrude. What finally had me in the emergency room (because I had been to my doctor several times and had a chest x-ray, EKG, bloodwork and an ultrasound of my neck, which all came back looking fine) was the swelling of my entire face one morning when I got up. I was diagnosed with superior vena cava syndrome (SVCS) that night, after a CT scan found a mass. After a biopsy the next day, I was diagnosed with non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma primary mediastinal B-cell - stage 2B. That was almost 3 years ago.

Comment from: lbuckland, 45-54 Female (Patient) Published: October 27

My face, neck and arms started swelling really bad, and then veins started popping out all over my chest and turning dark blue. The swelling got so bad had to go to the emergency room and was diagnosed with SVCS (superior vena cava syndrome) and am now on the 6th set of treatment of chemotherapy and next going for radiation on brain.

Comment from: lbuckland, 45-54 Female (Patient) Published: August 12

My superior vena cava syndrome (SVCS) started out with swelling of face, neck, arms, and veins busting out on chest and turning dark blue/purple. Also, I had red dots on right arm that had been there for months but the swelling just kept getting worse till my eyes were about closed and could not breathe. I went to the emergency room (ER) and was diagnosed with SVCS.

Comment from: Kat, 65-74 Female (Patient) Published: February 19

I had superior vena cava syndrome about 8 years ago related to faulty port-a-cath. I was treated with warfarin over several months and then taken off due to capillary leakage syndrome. I have now had a benign mass removed from my right upper chest and developed a large hematoma the night of surgery. I wonder if should be concerned since this clot is along the chest wall over the subclavian arteries.

Comment from: TJG46, 45-54 Female (Patient) Published: August 07

I have recently been diagnosed with superior vena cava syndrome. My primary care physician doesn’t seem to feel like I need further medical treatment. I am having symptoms and I want to know what is causing my blockage. I’m scared and desperate.

Comment from: LadySuperior, 45-54 Female (Patient) Published: March 03

The symptoms that I experienced with superior vena cava syndrome were swelling on side of neck, dilated veins in chest and fatigue.

Comment from: marie, 55-64 Male (Caregiver) Published: August 19

He had right side facial swelling, shortness of breath, and couldn't lie flat. We found out that he had metastatic cancer likely from the lung and died a week after he was diagnosed, with superior vena cava syndrome.

Comment from: leelee0607, 55-64 Female (Patient) Published: July 12

I have had a pacemaker since 2007 for cardiomyopathy and had to have it removed due faulty wiring and lead recall. My doctor advised that I have superior vena cava syndrome and it would be advisable to have a stent implanted prior to trying to replace my pacemaker. I am glad that my surgeon had me to have a chest x-ray which revealed this condition. I am also a dialysis patient which presents some additional concerns. I have a panel of doctors that are working on how to handle my needs. Thank goodness for their expertise!


Cancer is the result of the uncontrolled growth of abnormal cells anywhere in the body. See Answer