Deep vein thrombosis is a serious medical condition where a blood clot forms in one of the deep veins of the lower legs. It can occur in other parts of the body too, but this isn’t as common. A blood clot is dangerous because it can break free and travel through the veins or arteries until it reaches the brain, heart, or lungs. This can cause a stroke, heart attack, or pulmonary embolism, which often results in sudden death or, at best, long-term health problems. Because of this, it is crucial that those who have the highest risk of developing DVT know the following symptoms, causes, and methods of treating this condition.
The Symptoms of DVT
The first sign of a blood clot in the legs is pain that doesn’t go away, even if a person rests or puts their legs up. Next, the skin around the area that is sore will appear red and swollen. The swelling will cause the affected leg to be almost twice the size of the unaffected one, so this is often what causes people to seek medical treatment. And lastly, those who have this condition often mention that their leg feels heavy when they walk or stand up.
The Main Causes of DVT
The main cause of deep vein thrombosis is leading a sedentary lifestyle because sitting for long periods of time reduces the blood flow to the legs. The condition may also occur when a person who is normally active has to sit for an excessively long time, such as on an airplane or car ride across the country. Obesity and poor circulation from a heart disorder can also be contributing factors, and so can untreated heart rhythm disorders because they temporarily disrupt the blood flow for a few seconds at a time, and this is long enough for a blood clot to form.
Methods of Treating Deep Vein Thrombosis
Because of the serious side effects that some prescription medications have, many people have started switching to herbal remedies to treat the majority of their ailments. Sometimes, this is perfectly safe, such as the use of chamomile tea for those who are struggling with insomnia. But herbal remedies are not an acceptable substitute for deep vein thrombosis treatment because they do nothing to remove the blood clot. In some cases, they may actually worsen it because the blood clot could increase in size the longer that someone waits for treatment.
Because of this, it is best to only seek a proper medical diagnosis from a licensed physician who can order tests to confirm the blood clot and perform a special procedure to remove it, such as inserting an EKOS thrombolytic catheter. This type of catheter works by injecting blood clot dissolving medications right to the affected site, which makes the procedure more effective than oral medications. Sometimes, the catheter can also be used to completely break the blood clot up into small pieces, so it can’t do any harm as it passes through the veins or arteries.