What Are the Symptoms of Thrombosis?

Reviewed on 1/29/2021

What is thrombosis?

Depending on the location of the thrombus or blood clot, thrombosis may include pain and warmth in the area of the clot, or chest pain and difficulty breathing if the clot is near the lungs, among other symptoms.
Depending on the location of the thrombus or blood clot, thrombosis may include pain and warmth in the area of the clot, or chest pain and difficulty breathing if the clot is near the lungs, among other symptoms.

Thrombosis occurs when a blood clot obstructs the blood vessels. There are two types of thrombosis:

  • Venous thrombosis: It occurs when clots block the blood vessel that carries the blood to the heart.
  • Arterial thrombosis: It occurs when clots block the blood vessel that carries the blood from the heart to organs.

Some of the most common venous thromboses include:

Some of the most common arterial thrombosis include:

Symptoms may vary from person to person. Symptoms of a thrombosis in the extremities may include:

  • Pain in one leg (usually the calf or inner thigh)
  • Swelling in the leg or arm
  • Gangrene (a blackened foot or hand)
  • Numbness or weakness on one side of the body

Symptoms of venous thrombosis in the leg include:

  • Warmth
  • Tenderness
  • Redness of the leg or arm
  • Worsening leg pain while bending the foot
  • Leg cramps, especially at night, which often start in the calf
  • Bluish or whitish discoloration of the skin

Symptoms of a thrombosis in the heart or lungs (pulmonary embolism) include:

Symptoms of a thrombosis in the brain include:

What are the complications of a thrombosis?

A thrombus or blood clot may cause the following complications:

Can a thrombosis be prevented?

You can prevent a thrombosis by

  • Losing weight.
  • Quitting smoking.
  • Remaining physically active.
  • Exercising your legs during long trips.
  • Using special compression stockings.
  • Treating varicose veins on time.
  • Managing or controlling other health issues, such as diabetes, high blood pressure, and high cholesterol.
  • Keep the legs elevated while sitting down or in bed.
  • Avoiding birth control pills or hormone therapy unless absolutely necessary.
  • Eating a healthy, balanced diet.
  • Eating less salt.
  • Taking care of the following things while traveling a long distance by a train, car, or plane:
    • Avoid sitting for a long time. Get up and move around every 15-30 minutes during long-distance flights. Try simple stretching exercises while being seated.
    • Drink plenty of water.
    • Avoid drinking excess alcohol because it may lead to dehydration.
    • Perform simple leg exercises, such as stretching your legs.
    • Wear elastic compression stockings.
    • Take occasional short walks when possible.
    • Avoid taking sleeping pills because they can lead to immobility.

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References
https://www.hopkinsmedicine.org/health/conditions-and-diseases/thrombosis

https://www.cdc.gov/DHDSP/index.htm

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