When you cut yourself, your platelets jump into action and form a clot that prevents the blood vessels from leaking blood. In this regard, blood clots are lifesavers. When a blood clot forms in your blood vessels, however, quite the opposite can be true as the clot can prevent your blood from flowing freely.
To help you better understand the threat that these types of blood clots pose to your health, the team of heart health experts here at Advanced Cardiovascular Specialists decided to focus on this subject in this month’s blog post.
Here’s a look at why blood clots are so dangerous and what we can do to solve the problem.
There are three main types of blood clots that form in your blood vessels, including:
This type of embolism most often forms in the veins in your legs, as is the case with deep vein thrombosis. Venous thromboembolism most often develops on the heels of an injury to your blood vessel, sluggish circulation, or an elevation in your estrogen levels.
The primary complication we want to avoid when you have venous thromboembolism is when the blood clot breaks free and travels to your lungs, which leads to the next type of dangerous blood clot.
Your blood circulates through your lungs to pick up oxygen and when this process is compromised, your health is very much at risk. If a clot from your legs, such as deep vein thrombosis, travels to your lungs and blocks the flow of blood, your body is unable to get the oxygen it needs.
This condition occurs when a blood clot blocks or ruptures your coronary artery, which is the main vessel that delivers blood from your heart to your body. This condition often leads to sudden cardiac death.
People with coronary artery disease should pay close attention to this type of blood clot and, with our help, take steps to prevent them from occurring.
If we identify a blood clot, or the potential for clotting, we typically prescribe blood-thinning medications that prevent clots or medications that work to break up existing clots.
If the clot poses an immediate threat, we turn to surgery to remove the clot before it attempts to travel through your blood vessels.
A good way to address blood clots is to be aware of any symptoms, such as swelling and cramping in your legs, and to seek immediate help. These are signs that your circulation may be compromised.
Using advanced diagnostic tools, we can determine whether a blood clot exists and, if so, put you on an appropriate treatment plan.
Unfortunately, many people are unaware of the existence of blood clots until the unthinkable happens, which is why regular visits to our practice make good sense. During these visits, we can review your risks for blood clots and help you make a few lifestyle tweaks that can prevent them from forming in the first place.
If you want to learn more about blood clots and your risks, we invite you to contact our office in Mountain View, California, to schedule a consultation.