Deep vein thrombosis is a condition that occurs when a blood clot forms within one of the veins deep in your body. Usually it happens in the legs. The biggest threat of deep vein thrombosis is that the blood clot could break off and travel to your lungs. This would result in pulmonary embolism, which can be a life-threatening illness.
DVT is generally symptom-less, which makes it hard to diagnose. However, it’s a common condition. The CDC estimates that as many as 900,000 people are affected by deep vein thrombosis every year in the USA. Leading to 100,000 annual deaths.
The specific cause of deep vein thrombosis is unknown. Blood clots may result from anything. This prevents the blood from circulating or clotting as it should. However, there are particular factors that increase your risk of developing DVT.
While they might not guarantee the development of DVT, there are a number of things that indicate its chances. Risk factors for deep vein thrombosis include:
Prolonged bed rest:
If you’re in a hospital bed for a long time due to an accident, surgery, or paralysis, your legs will stay still for a long period. This means your calf muscles aren’t contracting, which helps your blood flow, and this will increase your risk of developing blood clots.
Being pregnant increases the pressure in the veins in your pelvis and thighs, which will also increase your risk of developing blood clots. This risk could continue for up to six weeks after the baby is delivered.
Smoking negatively impacts your blood’s flow and ability to clot, which will increase your risk for deep vein thrombosis.
Some kinds of cancer will increase the amount of certain substances in your blood which increase your risk of blood clots. Also, some cancer therapies will increase your risk of blood clots also.
Though deep vein thrombosis can occur at any age, if you’re over age 60, your risk of DVT will be significantly increased.
Sitting for extended periods of time:
If you drive or fly frequently, this means that your legs stay still for many hours along with your blood doesn’t circulate normally. This may cause blood clots forming in your calves because your calf muscles aren’t contracting as frequently as they should.
Inflammatory bowel disease:
There are certain bowel diseases, such as ulcerative colitis or Crohn’s disease that will increase your risk of deep vein thrombosis also.
Being overweight or obese:
Likewise to being pregnant, this may also increase the pressure on the veins on your legs and pelvis.
Personal or family history of DVT:
If you or someone in your family has experienced DVT earlier, this will increase your risk of developing deep vein thrombosis in the long run.
Because people with heart failure have limited role in the lungs and heart, individuals with this illness will have a greater risk of developing deep vein thrombosis.
Contraceptive pills and hormone replacement therapy:
These kinds of drugs help increase your blood’s ability to clot.
Inheriting a blood-clotting disease :
There are a few conditions and disorders which produce your blood clot more easily, but the majority of these inherited conditions won’t cause problems unless they’re combined with other risk factors.
Injury or operation:
Undergoing surgical procedures or experiencing harm to your veins may increase your risk of blood clots.