Blood Clots

Blood Clots

What causes blood clots (blood clots in the heart, leaking, and other causes)?

Blood clots in the heart. In atrial fibrillation, the upper chamber (atrium) of the heart does not beat in an organized manner. Instead, it jiggles, and blood tends to become stagnant along the walls of the atrium. Over time, this may cause small blood clots to form. Clots also can form in the ventricle after a heart attack when part of the heart muscle is injured and unable to contract normally. Since the damaged area doesn't contract with the rest of the heart, blood can start to pool or stagnate, leading to clot formation.

Blood leaking out of a blood vessel.  Blood clots can form when blood leaks out of a blood vessel, and can be very beneficial because the clot helps stop further bleeding at the site of injury. A few examples of how bleeding is controlled by the body's clotting mechanism are:

Blood clots causing other medical problems.Sometimes, normal blood clotting can cause medical problems because of its location. For example, blood the urine may occur from any of a variety of reasons (such as infection, trauma, or tumor), and clots may form and prevent the bladder from emptying, causing urinary retention.

Clot formation in the uterus may cause pain when the clots are passed through the cervix and can lead to vaginal bleeding, either as part of menstruation or as abnormal vaginal bleeding (menorrhagia, dysmenorrhea). Continue Reading

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Reviewed on 2/27/2015
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