Deep Vein Thrombosis (DVT)
Deep vein thrombosis (DVT) occurs when a blood clot develops in one or more veins deep inside your body. These clots can block the flow of blood through the affected veins and may cause pain or swelling as well as serious, life-threatening complications, such as a pulmonary embolism.
DVTs most often develop in the lower leg or thigh following surgery but can occur anywhere in the body. These thickened clumps of blood may form in response to trauma, inflammation, or when blood flow to the leg slows – such as during long periods of inactivity (e.g., airplane or car trips).
The following risk factors increase your risk of developing a DVT:
- Certain medical conditions, such as heart disease, cancer, or diabetes
- Pregnancy and childbirth
- Prolonged bed rest, especially after an illness or injury when walking may be difficult or avoided
- Birth control pills or hormone therapy (including HRT)
How to Tell If You Have a DVT
If you think you may have deep vein thrombosis, it's important to see a doctor right away so that the condition can be treated before it becomes more serious.
Symptoms of a DVT include swelling, pain, and redness in the affected leg (usually just one leg is affected). You may also notice that your skin feels warm to the touch or that the affected area looks different than usual (e.g., darker or discolored). If you experience these symptoms, contact your doctor immediately.
Why Blood Clots Are Dangerous
If the blood clot breaks free and travels to the heart or lungs, it can cause chest pain, shortness of breath, rapid heartbeat, sweating, nausea, and lightheadedness. If it lodges itself in a blood vessel in the lungs, blocking blood flow to the lungs, it is called a pulmonary embolism. This can be a life-threatening condition. If you experience any symptoms that may indicate a pulmonary embolism, this is a medical emergency – seek immediate medical attention by calling 911 or going to the nearest emergency room.
DVT Treatment Options
Once you have been diagnosed with a DVT, there are three main concerns: preventing it from getting larger, keeping it from breaking loose, and preventing future DVTs.
Your DVT treatment will likely include prescription blood-thinning medication (anticoagulants) to prevent the blood clot from getting larger. Additional clot-busting medications (thrombolytics) may be used to help dissolve the clot. You will likely be advised to wear compression stockings and elevate the affected leg throughout the day to help reduce swelling and pain. In some cases, your doctor may recommend surgery to destroy or remove the clot.
With proper treatment, most people with DVT make a full recovery and don't experience any lasting effects from the condition. However, a DVT can be deadly if it's not treated promptly, so it's important to seek medical care right away if you think you may have this condition.
DVT Blood Clot Treatment in Miami Lakes, Plantation, Coconut Creek & Aventura, FL
Do you think you may have a blood clot or deep vein thrombosis (DVT)? Get the testing and treatment you need at Florida Endovascular and Interventional in South Florida. Call us at (786) 534-2555 to schedule an appointment or request an appointment now. We look forward to seeing you at one of our four convenient locations in Miami Lakes, Plantation, Coconut Creek, or Aventura.