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Deep Vein Thrombosis is a dangerous condition that occurs when a blood clot forms in a vein deep within the body, often in the lower leg or thigh. This clot is very dangerous, as it can travel through the blood stream and create blockages. If the clot enters one of the pulmonary arteries of the heart, it can prevent the flow of blood to the lungs. This blockage is called a pulmonary embolism, and it can be fatal.
This condition can be caused if the flow of blood is slow, often from lack of movement or immobilization. This could be due to long periods of bed rest or sitting without movement, whether from illness, recovery from surgery, or travel. Another cause of deep vein thrombosis is damage of the inner lining of a vein, which can be caused by injury, surgery, inflammation or other factors. Injury, obesity, pregnancy, smoking, diabetes and other factors can also increase the risk of deep vein thrombosis.
Discomfort, pain, swelling, or tenderness in the area of the clot are some of the symptoms of deep vein thrombosis. Blue or red coloration may also occur in the skin. If the condition progresses into a pulmonary embolism, symptoms like coughing up blood or having short, rapid, or painful breathing. If these symptoms arise, seek immediate medical attention.
If the condition is not severe, conservative treatment may prove to be beneficial. This can include heat therapy, elevation, and compression stockings. Medication may be prescribed to help break apart the clot. If the condition is very severe, surgery may be necessary to prevent the clot from creating a pulmonary embolism.