Blood Clot - Symptoms, Causes and Prevention in Pakistan

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Assoc. Prof. Dr. Fatima Khanum

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Assoc. Prof. Dr. Mubashir Razzaq Khan

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Dr. Zaffar Iqbal

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Dr. Hidayat Ullah

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Summary about Blood Clot

A blood clot is a collection of blood that has changed state from liquid to gel-like or semisolid. Clotting is a vital procedure that can save you from losing too much blood in some situations, such as when you've been hurt or cut.

When a clot develops inside a vein, it does not usually disintegrate on its own. This may be an extremely hazardous, even deadly, scenario.

A stationary blood clot will not hurt you in most cases, but it may move and become harmful. If a blood clot escapes and travels through your veins to your heart and lungs, it might become lodged and block blood flow. This is a medical situation that requires immediate attention.

Symptoms of Blood Clot

A blood clot can cause the following symptoms:

  • throbbing or cramping pain swelling, redness, and warmth in a leg or arm
  • shortness of breath
  • acute chest discomfort (which may be greater when you breathe in)
  • and coughing up blood

Blood clots can be fatal if not addressed promptly.

Causes of Blood Clot

The human body responds to an accident or cut by clotting your blood as it should. These sorts of clots are not dangerous. A blood clot can develop without being triggered (such as an injury or cut). This is more likely to occur in the presence of certain risk factors or conditions. Among the risk factors are:

  • Sitting for a long time (often the case with travel when you are forced to sit for long periods in an aeroplane, a train, or a car)
  • Long-term bed rest (often the case with surgery or illness)
  • Pregnancy
  • Smoking
  • Obesity
  • Birth control drugs, hormone replacement treatment, and anti-breast cancer medications
  • Certain forms of cancer (pancreatic, lung, multiple myeloma, or blood-related cancers)
  • a traumatic event (serious injury)
  • Some significant surgical procedures
  • The age of the person (especially over the age of 60)
  • A blood clot-related family history
  • Autoimmune conditions
  • Chronic inflammation-related diseases
  • Certain diseases (HIV/AIDS, hepatitis C, or Lyme disease, for example)

Risk Factors of Blood Clot

Excessive blood clotting can be caused by various causes, resulting in restricted or stopped blood flow. Blood clots can move to the arteries or veins of the brain, heart, kidneys, lungs, and extremities, causing a heart attack, stroke, organ damage, or even death.

  • Smoking
  • Obesity and being overweight
  • Pregnancy
  • Bed rest for an extended period of time as a result of surgery, hospitalization, or sickness
  • Long durations of sitting, such as in a vehicle or on an aircraft
  • Cancer caused by the use of birth control tablets or hormone replacement treatment

Preventive Measures of Blood Clot

The following measures should be taken to prevent blood clots:

  • Improve blood flow in your legs when sitting for long periods of time, following bed rest, or travelling for more than 4 hours by moving your legs as much as possible and exercising your calf muscles.
  • Get up and walk around every 2–3 hours if you can and if space allows
  • Do seated leg stretches

    • Raise and lower your heels while keeping your toes on the floor
    • Raise and lower your toes while keeping your heels on the floor
    • Tighten and release your leg muscles
  • If you’re at risk for a DVT, talk with your doctor about taking medication or wearing graduated compression stockings.

Types of Blood Clot

Clots are classified into two types:

  • Arterial clots are clots that develop in the arteries. When artery clots develop, they instantly produce symptoms.
  • Venous clots are blood clots that develop in veins. Venous clots generally develop gradually over time.