Deep Vein Thrombosis
By: Rajni Badhan, Shakira Scott
What is deep vein thrombosis?
Deep vein Thrombosis is also referred to as:
- Blood clot in the leg.
- Venous thrombosis.
- Venous thromboembolism (VTE)
Deep vein thrombosis can be fatal if a clot travels to the heart and causes a pulmonary embolism.
Deep veins, such as the femoral vein in the leg is a common place for a thrombus to form.
A clot can form on the inner walls of the veins, overtime the thrombus can break apart on its own.
Half the time, DVT causes no symptoms
Swelling in one or both legs
Pain or tenderness in one or both legs, even if it's just when you stand or walk
Warm skin on your leg
Red or discolored skin on your leg
Veins you can see
DVT can lead to PE, which has the following symptoms:
Shortness of breath
Your doctor will diagnose deep vein thrombosis (DVT) based on your medical history, a physical exam, and test results. He or she will identify your risk factors and rule out other causes of your symptoms.For some people, DVT might not be diagnosed until after they receive emergency treatment for pulmonary embolism.
Different Tests for diagnosis:
- Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI)
Based on follow up studies with patients who had a DVT or PE, it is estimated that about 25% will have another episode. This risk can be decreased by anticoagulation therapy (taking a blood thinner). DVT is only life threatening if it leads to pulmonary embolism (PE), which can cause sudden death.
Also, anticoagulants help prevent existing blood clots from becoming larger. The length of time to take anticoagulants will vary based on your own health, where the blood clot is in your leg, and your risk for a pulmonary embolism.
Updated by: Rita Nanda, A. T. A. E. T.
Updated by: Rita Nanda, and the A.D.A.M. Editorial team. "Deep Venous Thrombosis: Medlineplus Medical Encyclopedia".Nlm.nih.gov. N. p., 2015. Web. 11 Jan. 2016.
Medicinenet.com,. "Deep Vein Thrombosis And Pulmonary Embolism Quiz Faqs - Frequently Asked Questions - Medicinenet". N. p., 2016. Web. 11 Jan. 2016.
WebMD,. "Deep Vein Thrombosis Health Center". N. p., 2016. Web. 11 Jan. 2016.