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Blood Clot Symptoms

Blood clot is defined as a semisolid gelatinous mass of coagulated blood that consists of red blood cells, white blood cells, and platelets entrapped in a fibrin network. Medically blood clot is called ‘Thrombus’. Normally, blood clot symptoms occurs whenever there is injury to the tissue.

Clotting is a natural process in which blood cells and fibrin strands rapidly form a clump to stop bleeding when a blood vessel is injured. This article gives some of the blood clot symptoms and pathological conditions of blood clot that occur due to abnormal clotting of the blood.

Depending on the position of the blood clot there are several symptoms of blood clot.

In general, blood clot at the extremities of the body causes swelling, pain, increased warmth and redness. Some of the classic blood clot symptoms in the leg are:

  • Aching and Swelling
  • Dull, aching throb in the calves, especially when the person is walking
  • Tenderness or pain over a vein
  • Difficult to bear weight
  • The skin may have a ‘pins and needles’ feeling
  • Inflammation in the surface veins and redness over the surface
  • Sharp, shooting pain when the foot is being flexed
  • Warm sensation
  • Widening or dilation of the surface veins

Blood clot in the arteries supplying brain causes ‘Thromboembolic stroke’, often called stroke. It usually has symptoms that are more pronounced on the opposite side of the body. Some of the symptoms of stroke are:

  • Paralysis or loss of sensation in one side of the face, leg or arm
  • Visual disabilities
  • Speech abnormalities if the left hand side of the brain is affected
  • Severe headaches
  • Confusion
  • Loss of balance and coordination

Blood clot in the arteries supplying lung (pulmonary embolus) can have several effects on the lungs. Some of the blood clot symptoms in lung include:

  • Chest pain
  • Shortness of breath
  • Coughing blood
  • Heart Rate abnormalities
  • Abdominal pain
  • Weakness and dizziness
  • Pain at the top
  • Shoulder pain and pain in the back

Blood clot in heart can cause severe heart attack which can be life threatening. The prominent symptom is sudden chest pain. Some of the other blood clot symptoms in heart include:

  • Irregular heart beat
  • Pounding sensation
  • Chest tightness
  • Pain in abdominal region
  • Difficult in breathing
  • Shortness of breath
  • Vomiting
  • Nausea
  • Fainting or even collapse

Blood Clot Symptoms After Surgery:

During surgery, there can be a risk of internal injury. This an lead to formation of blood clot after the procedure within the first two weeks normally. There are chances of these clots appearing even during the surgery of hours after the process. It is for this reason, doctors advice the patients to be mobile and do not sit in a place for long. Whenever pain emerges due to the clotting of blood, it is necessary that the area should not be massaged. Otherwise, there is chance of the clot travelling to very sensitive part of the body along with the stream of blood. This can prove to be fatal.

Formation of blood clots is more common after orthopedic surgeries like knee replacement surgery, back surgery, hip replacement surgery, fracture repair, joint surgery and pelvic surgeries like urological and gynecological surgeries. In these types of surgery, the patient inevitably requires bed rest and cannot be involved in physical activities. This increases the risk of blood clot symptoms to appear. For instance, joint replacement surgery increases the risk of deep vein thrombosis condition of blood clot. Certain factors like age (above 40 years), type of surgery, medical history of the patient and medicines taken also play an important role in the development of these symptoms after surgery.

How to Diagnose and Treat Blood Clot Symptoms After Surgery ?

Several tests like Doppler ultrasound, lung scan, D-dimer blood test, chest x-ray, leg venography, plethysmography of the legs and pulmonary angiogram can diagnose blood clot signs after surgery. Drugs used to treat clotting of blood are called anticoagulants. A well known anticoagulant is the drug aspirin. Heparin or warfarin are other coagulants prescribed doctors after surgery. Compression stockings and trying to exercise can prove very beneficial as blood circulation improvement does not allow the formation of blood clots.

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