What is Deep Vein Thrombosis?

What is Deep Vein Thrombosis?

Deep vein thrombosis (DVT) is a disease that affects the deep veins in your body, most commonly occurring in the legs. This disease is characterized by clot formation in one or more of the deep veins leading to various symptoms and complications. The condition affects around 900,000 people annually in the US only, and statistics show that approximately 60,000 to 100,000 people die of DVT complications in the US every year. 

The mortality associated with DVT is mostly due to a late diagnosis. Therefore, it is crucial to recognize deep vein thrombosis at the early stages and get treatment. Let’s get into some details to give you a better overview of this condition.

The cause of deep vein thrombosis

We call it DVT when there are clots in the deep veins, especially in the deep veins of the legs. These clots can stay in the leg or travel to other blood vessels in the body. There can be various reasons for the formation of DVT because certain factors increase the risk. Some of these factors include:

  • The genetic tendency of clot development
  • Recent surgery
  • Being bedridden
  • Recent trauma
  • A previous episode of DVT
  • Smoking
  • Pregnancy
  • Recent childbirth
  • Obesity
  • Heart disease
  • Hormonal therapy
  • Kidney disease
  • Cancer
  • Cancer treatment
  • Varicose veins

These are some of the common factors that increase the risk of development, but a person can have more than one risk factor of DVT at a time.

What are the symptoms of DVT?

Recognizing the symptoms of DVT is crucial to get an early diagnosis. You should know the symptoms of this disease to avoid any delay in the treatment as a delay can be deadly. These are the common symptoms of this condition.

  • A feeling of on and off a pain that starts severely and abruptly 
  • Redness and swelling of the leg
  • The area feels warmer than the rest of the skin
  • Cramping that mostly occurs at night
  • Some skin changes can also occur over time

How can you prevent DVT?

DVT is a serious condition, and prevention is key. If you are more prone to this condition, i.e., you have any risk factors, you should be cautious and watch for symptoms. Adopt the following precautionary measures to reduce the risk of DVT development.

  • Adopt an active lifestyle. Walk and exercise at least three to four times per week.
  • Shed your extra weight. It will improve your health overall.
  • Quit smoking and all tobacco use.
  • Take care of your diet. Drink more water, and eat more vegetables.
  • If you have health conditions that increase DVT risk, such as heart disease or kidney disease, ensure to manage them properly. See your doctor regularly, and be compliant with your medication.
  • Go for an annual check-up. Your doctor might catch the small signs of DVT that you might not notice.

Your health is essential, so whenever you notice the slightest change from your normal state of health, do not ignore it. Keep a close eye, and see a doctor for any concerns.

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