Summer is once again here and many of my patients are traveling on vacations, or visiting friends and relatives across the country. Before they go, however, I like to offer them some pre-travel guidance regarding a potentially serious medical condition that can happen with long periods of sitting in cars, trains, and airplanes… blood clots.
Up to 600,000 Americans foster clots each year with 1 in 3 persons developing serious medical complications from them. I’d like to share with you the same advice I give my patients about the symptoms and risk factors for developing blood clots and how you can prevent them.
What Are Blood Clots?
They are clumps of debris or fat, coagulated blood, or even surgical materials, within veins. They can start in the legs and travel within the vein system to the brain, heart or lungs and cause a heart attack, stroke, or pulmonary embolism.
What Are The Symptoms of A Blood Clot?
The symptoms of a clot are varied, depending trùng huyết đông lạnh upon their origin, but almost always include sudden and/or severe pain at the site. All require immediate medical attention. Here’s a list of the common types of clots and their symptoms:
Legs: Blood clots in the legs can often be disregarded as a pulled muscle, as they can feel like a “Charlie Horse” type of cramp. Search for swelling of the leg, warmth to touch, redness or bluish discoloration, pain.
Lungs: Sudden onset of shortness of breath. A stabbing, sharp chest pain that gets worse with full breaths, fast heart beat and/or an unexplained hack that may contain blood.
Heart: A clot that has traveled to the heart will give the symptoms of a heart attack, severe, crushing-type chest pain, and shortness of breath.
Brain: A clot that has traveled to the brain is called an ischemic stroke, which is a blockage of blood stream. Its symptoms can include severe/sudden headache, confusion, blurred vision, dizziness, weakness on one side of the body, loss of balance or coordination/inability to walk, inability to speak or understand language.
Kidneys: Not as common as leg or lung blood clots, but kidney clots do happen. The symptoms are sharp pain in the lower back, usually on one side, inability to urinate, high circulatory strain, retention of liquid, swollen ankles, and shortness of breath.