Blood Clots - Recognize the Symptoms

There are many complex mechanisms in our bodies. One of them is the body’s ability to form blood clots. Although in many cases beneficial, blood clots can also create an array of serious health issues. Blood is in constant motion as the heart pumps it to all different organs and cells of the human system. It is then returned back to the heart by squeezing motion of the veins. The process is continuously repeated, but when one of the veins is clogged, the flow of the blood is interrupted creating a life-threatening emergency such as a stroke, heart attack, pulmonary emboli and other conditions.

Depending on the location of the blood clot, several different symptoms may occur and they include the following:

  • Abdominal pain
  • Chest pain
  • Headache
  • Loss of sensation
  • Confusion
  • Dizziness
  • Paralysis
  • Numbness
  • Redness
  • Problems with walking
  • Swelling
  • Slurred speech
  • Blurred vision
  • Fever

Knowing the warning signs and learning how to recognize them can save a life. Ignoring the symptoms may lead to serious health problems and even death.

Swelling in Legs

A medical professional should be contacted immediately if redness, swelling, excessive warmth and pain are present. The blood clots typically form within the lower limbs first before traveling to the lungs.

Breathing Difficulty and Sudden Attacks of Cough

If the patient experiences onsets of unexplained shortness of breath and continuous coughing episodes for no apparent reason, it may mean that the fragments of blood clot already entered the lungs.

High Heart Rate and Difficulty Moving

Once the lumps of blood clot break off and reach the lungs, the heart rate rapidly increases. It often causes panic attacks elevating the rate even higher. As a result, a heart attack or stroke may take place. It is recommended to seek medical help immediately.

Sharp Chest Pains

The pain generally occurs under the rib cage, and it brings burning and heavy sensation. It is often a sign that the blood clot has reached the lungs and is traveling upwards towards the heart.

The treatment of blood clots is focused on interrupting the normal process of clotting in the body. Different medications are chosen based on the present condition, the patient’s medical history and the type of disease they are experiencing. Most mild cases are treated with warm compresses and regular doses of Aspirin. In severe cases, surgical treatment may be necessary to remove the blood clot. The key medicine is always prevention, especially for patients with a family history of similar nature.

The risk of heart disease and stroke can be reduced by closely monitoring diabetes, cholesterol and high blood pressure levels on a regular basis. Proper diet and smoking cessation are typically recommended to alleviate the need for excessive medication. The patient receives nutritional counseling and is scheduled for regular follow-up appointments.

Hormone therapy and birth control regimen create a risk for excessive blood clotting. Smoking and drinking maximizes that risk. Other unhealthy habits, such as sedentary lifestyle elevate the possibility of unexpected episodes of blood clotting as well. The medication is then carefully balanced to avoid unwanted side-effects.


Other articles you may be interested in...