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Radio Shows | Deep Vein Thrombosis | mp3wmawav

Today, we'll discuss a silent killer - Deep Vein Thrombosis.

In 2003 David Bloom, an NBC correspondent, died in Iraq, not from bullets or road side bombs, but from deep vein thrombosis or DVT. Tragically, it may have been caused by long hours spent cramped inside an Army vehicle.

He complained to doctors about cramps behind his knee and they suspected DVT, but he didn't get treatment and died.

Recently, Vice President Dick Cheney was diagnosed with the same disorder and is now being treated. So just what is DVT and how do you prevent it?

Deep vein thrombosis happens when blood clots form in the deep veins, most often in the leg. It can be life threatening because a clot can form, break off, and travel through the blood stream.

If it lodges in the brain, lungs, or heart it can block blood flow and cause severe damage to that organ. A pulmonary embolism results in symptoms that include chest pain, shortness of breath and sweating and requires immediate emergency medical care. That's what killed David Bloom. The best way to prevent a DVT is to know the risk factors. They include immobility, anyone over the age of 40 and a previous history of DVT, pregnancy and obesity.

In most cases, DVT results in small clots which are harmlessly broken down. Larger clots can cause swelling or pain in the calf and signal you should see a doctor.

Immobility is one situation anyone can find themselves like during long car and plane rides. Those of who sit one position for many hours at work or at home are also at risk of DVT. You can prevent it by stretching your legs and walking every hour or two. The goal is to keep the blood flowing in your lower legs.

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MedlinePlus is a goldmine of good health information from the world's largest medical library, the National Library of Medicine. Health professionals and consumers alike can depend on it for information that is authoritative and up to date. MedlinePlus has extensive information from the National Institutes of Health and other trusted sources on over 740 diseases and conditions.
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The National Heart Lung and Blood Institute has developed the Disease Conditions Index for patients and the public. The DCI contains health information, written in plain language, on diseases, conditions, and procedures related to: Heart diseases, Lung diseases, Blood diseases and Sleep disorders. The site is not only very factual but it also has an excellent animation that illustrates DVT with pulmonary embolism that killed David Bloom as mentioned in this episode. The animation shows how a blood clot in a deep vein of the leg can break off, travel to the lungs, and block blood flow.
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The Society for Vascular Surgery seeks to advance excellence and innovation in vascular health through education, advocacy, research and public awareness. The organization was founded in 1947.
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