Deep vein thrombosis (DVT) is a condition that affects over 900,000 people in America. Out of the large number, 10-30% die within one month after diagnosis. The shocking statistics indicate the grave nature of DVT. But what is DVT? We sat with El Paso deep vein thrombosis specialists to understand what DVT is, how it affects the body, and the best alternative to guarantee perfect health.
Vascular specialists at I-Vascular Center in El Paso offer full DVT diagnosis and tailor unique treatment plans proven efficacy. Dr. Gerges and his team have years of experience in vascular care, and the dedicated team is what you need to overcome deep vein thrombosis.
Deep Vein Thrombosis
DVT is a spontaneous clot in the deep veins of the vascular system. A thrombus usually occurs in the lower leg and thigh; however, clots may be present in the arms or the whole leg. Deep vein clots occur spontaneously or due to surgical procedures and prolonged bed rest. Long immobile periods may also cause deep vein thrombosis as research shows 4 hours of unchanged posture causes blood clots.
Signs of Deep Vein Thrombosis
- Swelling and pain in the affected leg
- Discolored skin
- The unusual warmth in the affected leg
- Cramping in the legs.
DVT sometimes precedes pulmonary embolism (PE), which surfaces when DVT has traveled to the lungs. PE symptoms as a sign of deep vein thrombosis include:
- Shortness of breath
- Persistent coughing
- Blood in the sputum
Diagnosis and Treatment
Primary deep vein thrombosis diagnosis relies on imaging tests such as venography or ultrasonography. A D-dimer test rules out deep vein thrombosis. A D-dimer test detects elevated levels of protein. Blood clots prevent blood circulation and hence the protein build up. However, the D- dimer test does not solely diagnose DVT. Duplex ultrasound scans determine the geometry of the clot for a more accurate diagnosis and aids in developing a treatment approach.
Coagulation profile is another innovative test that determines how the body responds to anticoagulants to establish whether you have DVT.
Deep Vein Thrombosis Treatment
Vascular centers employ a wide range of treatment plans ranging from blood thinners to graduated compression stockings. The initial treatment is usually administering anticoagulants. However, vascular specialists at I-Vascular Center employ therapy for initial cases of DVT. Some anticoagulants have adverse reactions to your body; hence it is safer to start with moderate treatment.
Anticoagulants of blood thinners lower the platelets clotting ability to prevent clots from forming and already formed ones from expanding. Doctors employ coagulants such as low molecular weight heparin, warfarin, enoxaparin, and subcutaneous unfractionated heparin. A blend of two or more medications usually brings the best resolution. However, consult a medical practitioner to understand the side effects of each medication.
In advanced DVT stages, vascular specialists recommend thrombectomy, a surgical procedure to remove existing clots in the veins. When Deep Vein thrombosis has caused PE, the doctor may implant an IVC filter in the vena cava to prevent clots from reaching your heart. Blood clots in the heat are fatal.
Sometimes the initial sign for deep vein thrombosis is pulmonary embolism. Frequent checkups can save your life from severe DVT. Visit the I-Vascular Centers for accurate diagnosis and effective treatment techniques.