With national pulmonary rehabilitation week just around the corner (March 14-20) now seems like the perfect time to talk about deep vein thrombosis or DVT for short. Deep vein thrombosis is a serious condition caused by a blood clot in the vein (usually the leg) so it’s important to know how to check for DVT at home.
DVT is one of the major causes of pulmonary embolism and occurs when a blood clot travels up from the deep veins in the leg causing a blockage in the lungs. If not treated, it can be fatal.
The clot itself is formed when blood turns from a liquid into a solid state particularly in areas where blood flow is slow or has been disturbed and typically occurs after surgery or after long periods of inactivity – hence the concern and publicity about the dangers of long haul flying.
The good news is that if caught early, deep vein thrombosis can be treated but it’s important to know what to look out for.
Just like many ailments, DVT comes with a wide range of signs and symptoms all of which should alert you to the potential dangers. These include:
These symptoms or signs may appear suddenly or occur slowly over time, so it pays to keep a close eye on your lower limbs at home, particularly if you are in a high-risk category.
…then you are at higher risk of developing vein problems leading to deep vein thrombosis.
So if you do notice any of the signs at home and you fall into one of the categories above then you should schedule an appointment with your doctor as a matter of urgency.
To avoid getting deep vein thrombosis you should look to keep your weight down- particularly if you fall into that overweight or obese category. It’s thought that even small amounts of weight loss are enough to reduce the risk of developing DVT. Also, try to stay as active as possible. Taking regular exercise such as walking can also help to keep DVT at bay.
If you do happen to be bedridden for long periods – particularly during convalescence, try to flex and stretch the legs, wiggle your toes, and move your ankles regularly to keep the circulation moving in the lower limbs.
So there you have it… how to check for DVT at home and why you really should!
Here at the Midwest Institute for Non-Surgical Therapy (MINT), we can help you to tackle the problems of leg pain including poor circulation before you develop DVT.
Dr. Goke Akinwande and his team are well-equipped and highly skilled to treat both vein and arterial problems including peripheral arterial disease (PAD). We will perform a comprehensive evaluation to determine the cause of your problem and treat it accordingly.
If you are concerned about the possibility of developing DVT or have any of the symptoms listed above, then get complete peace of mind and schedule an appointment at a MINT clinic near you.