What is it and what are the risk factors?

Blood clots, also known as VTP deep vein thrombosis, is a condition that can be suffered by people who travel long distances, whether by plane, bus, train or car. This can happen especially on journeys longer than four hours.

“In general, anyone who sits for a long time, without moving the lower limbs and who has associated risk factors, can suffer from economy class syndrome, regardless of the means of transport – train, bus, car – although ‘there is a greater likelihood of that occurring on an airplane due to causes such as low barometric pressure, dehydration and immobility,’ indicates the health entity Sanitas.

As the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention explain, these blood clots form in the veins below the surface of the skin. “The longer you sit still, the greater the risk of a blood clot. In many cases, blood clots dissolve on their own. However, a serious health problem can occur when part of the clot breaks free, travels to the lungs and creates a blockage.

When the clot travels to the lungs, it can kill the person. Pulmonary embolism can cause permanent damage to these organs, low oxygen levels in the blood, and damage to other organs due to lack of oxygen. It can also cause pulmonary hypertension and weaken the heart.

Anyone can suffer from deep vein thrombosis. ANDThe risk of their formation is low, but increases with the distance traveled. People with “traveller’s thrombosis,” as the condition is called, have one or more risk factors. Some of them include:

  • Being older (risk increases after age 40).
  • Obesity (having a body mass index greater than 30 kg/m2).
  • Have had a recent operation or injury (within the last 3 months).
  • Use contraceptives that contain estrogen.
  • Being on hormone replacement therapy.
  • Pregnancy and postpartum period.
  • Ever had a blood clot.
  • Having a family history of blood clots.
  • Have cancer.
  • Have limited mobility.
  • Catheter in a large vein.
  • Varicose veins.
  • Cardiopathy.
  • Lung diseases.
  • Cancer and its treatment;
  • Inflammatory bowel disease (Crohn’s disease or ulcerative colitis).

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, about one-third of people with deep vein thrombosis have long-term complications. One of them is post-thrombotic syndrome, which causes symptoms such as inflammation or ulcers in the affected area.

To prevent this condition, changes must be made in the diet to take care of the heart, use compression stockings, move the legs during long journeys, among others. If you have risk factors, you should see a doctor.

pulmonary embolism

This condition occurs when a clump of material, usually a blood clot, blocks an artery in the lungs.

“The parts of the lung that are supplied by each blocked artery are stripped of blood and can die.. This is called pulmonary infarction.. This makes it harder for the lungs to deliver oxygen to the rest of the body,” explain experts from the Mayo Clinic, a nonprofit entity dedicated to clinical practice, education, and research.

Symptoms of a pulmonary embolism include:

  • Breathless.
  • Accelerated breathing.
  • Chest pain or discomfort, which worsens with coughing or deep breathing.
  • Increased heart rate.
  • coughing up blood
  • Very low blood pressure, dizziness or fainting.

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