What is Thrombosis, Causes and Symptoms of Thrombosis


  • Posted on- May 22, 2018
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What is thrombosis?

Thrombosis is a disorder that occurs when your blood clots block the blood vessels. Basically there are 2 main types of thrombosis:

  • Venous thrombosis is occurred when the blood clot blocks a vein. Veins that carry blood from the body back into the heart.
  • Arterial thrombosis is occurred when the blood clot blocks an artery. Arteries that carry oxygen-rich blood away from the heart to the body.

What causes thrombosis?

Venous thrombosis may be caused by:
  • Injury or disease to the leg veins
  • Not being able to move around (immobility) for any reason
  • A broken bone (fracture)
  • Certain medicines
  • Obesity
  • Inherited disorders, or a greater likelihood of having a certain disorder based on your genes
  • Autoimmune diseases that makes to clot your blood more likely
  • Medicines that increase your risk of clotting (like specific birth control medicines)

Arterial thrombosis can be caused by a hardening of the arteries, called arteriosclerosis. This basically occurs when fatty or calcium deposits cause artery walls to thicken. This can further lead to a production of fatty material (called plaque) in the artery walls. This plaque can suddenly burst (rupture), followed by a blood clot.

Arterial thrombosis can occur in the arteries that supply blood to the heart muscle (coronary arteries). This can lead to a heart attack. If arterial thrombosis occurs in a blood vessel in the brain, it can lead to a stroke.

What are the risk factors for thrombosis?

Many of the risk factors for venous and arterial thrombosis are the same.

Risk factors for venous thrombosis may include:
  • If someone in the family had suffered from deep vein thrombosis in the past
  • Hormone therapy or birth control pills
  • Pregnancy
  • Injury happened to a vein, like from surgery, a broken bone, or other trauma
  • Unable to move freely, like after surgery or on a long trip
  • Inherited blood clotting disorders
  • A central venous catheter
  • Older age
  • Smoking
  • Being overweight or obese
  • Some health conditions, such as cancer, heart disease, lung disease, or Crohn's disease

Risk factors for arterial thrombosis may include:
  • Smoking
  • Diabetes
  • High blood pressure
  • High cholesterol
  • Lack of activity and obesity
  • Poor diet
  • Family history of arterial thrombosis
  • Lack of movement, such as after surgery or on a long trip
  • Older age

How is thrombosis diagnosed?

Your doctor will take your medical history and give you a physical exam. Other tests may include:
  • Ultrasound - This test uses sound waves to check the blood flow in your arteries and veins.
  • Blood tests - These may include tests to see how well your blood can clot.
  • Venography - For venography, a dye is putted into your veins. The X-rays are then taken to show blood flow and look for clots. The dye makes your veins easier to see on the X-rays.


What are the symptoms of thrombosis?

Each person’s symptoms may vary. Some of the symptoms of thrombosis may include:

  • Pain in one leg (usually the calf or inner thigh)
  • Swelling in the leg or arm
  • Chest pain
  • Weakness or numbness on one side of the body
  • Sudden change in your mental state

Some symptoms of thrombosis can look like other blood disorders or health problems. Always visit your doctor to have a better diagnosis.


How is thrombosis treated?

Your doctor will create a treatment plan for you depending upon:

  • Your age, overall health, and medical history
  • How sick you are
  • How well you take up certain medicines, treatments, or therapies
  • If you know that your condition is expected to get worse
  • What you would like to do

The treatment of thrombosis may use:
  • Medicines that thins the blood (anticoagulants)
  • Thin tubes (catheters) are used to widen the affected vessels
  • A wire mesh tube (stent) that holds the opening of blood vessel and stops it from closing
  • Medicines to club with or dissolve blood clots

Your doctor may advise other treatments.


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