Any time blood stops dripping or running through your blood vessels it has “clotted.” This is a good thing when you are bleeding and your body forms a clot, or a scab. Blood clots that form in arteries or veins can cause big problems, sometimes life-threatening or limb -threatening problems. Blood clots can occur anywhere in the body that you have blood vessels which means just about anywhere. The most common place a clot occurs is in the brain, neck, legs and arms.
A clot in the brain can cause a stroke and should you have signs of a stroke you should IMMEDIATELY CALL 9-1-1. These symptoms include: onset of weakness that is primarily on one side of your body, facial droop, difficulty speaking, or walking. This is a medical emergency and you should call an ambulance to get you to a hospital-based emergency room as rapidly as possible. A blood clot in the arteries can cause a limb-threatening emergency. If you have fairly rapid, sudden pain in your hands or feet, it is getting cool to the touch, bluish in color and you cannot feel a pulse you should seek care immediately in an emergency room.
DEEP VENOUS THROMBOSIS, also known as DVT, is a term for a blood clot most commonly found in the leg veins, although there will be similar symptoms if you have one in the veins of your arm. W care about DVTs because they can break off and go to the lungs causing a pulmonary embolism which can be life threatening emergency.
SYMPTOMS OF DVT:
- increased discomfort with movement
WHO IS AT RISK?
Anyone who has experienced the following is at risk for blood clots:
- leg fractures
- major trauma
- stroke with decreased ability to move
- cancer patients
- use of hormones or oral contraceptives (greater risk if you smoke as well)
- travel without much movement for 8 hours or more
HOW DO WE DIAGNOSE A DVT?
An ultrasound of the legs is used to diagnose DVTs
HOW DO WE TREAT DVTs?
Blood clots are treated with anticoagulants which we can start you on in our Urgency Center.