What Do Blood Clots Feel Like? Warning Signs of DVT | UPMC HealthBeat
Deep vein thrombosis (DVT) is a dangerous blood clot that forms deep in the body, usually in the veins of the lower leg. If left untreated, DVT can be fatal. There are some warning signs of DVT that can alert you to a problem.
Symptoms of Deep Vein Thrombosis
Swelling and tightness in the leg are common early symptoms of deep vein thrombosis, as well as pain or tenderness when standing or walking. As the blood clot worsens, the skin around it often turns red or discolored and feels warm to the touch.
Avoid DVT Complications with Proper Treatment
If the clot travels to the lungs, it can cause a pulmonary embolism, a potentially fatal complication. If the clot travels to the lungs, it can cause varicose veins, pain, and ulcers in the leg from prolonged swelling.
What to Expect with a DVT Diagnosis
Deep vein thrombosis (DVT) is treatable, so don’t wait for your symptoms to get worse. Visit the UPMC Heart and Vascular Institute online to learn more about DVT or to make an appointment with a specialist.
Can you feel a clot travel up your leg?
Early symptoms of deep vein thrombosis include swelling and tightness in the leg, as well as a persistent, throbbing cramp-like feeling in the leg, and pain or tenderness when standing or walking.
How long does it take for a blood clot to travel?
A DVT or pulmonary embolism can take weeks or months to completely dissolve; even a minor surface clot can take weeks to dissolve. If you have a DVT or pulmonary embolism, you will typically feel better as the clot shrinks.
What happens when a blood clot travels?
A blood clot that is immobile won’t harm you, but it has the potential to move and become dangerous. If a blood clot breaks free and travels through your veins to your heart and lungs, it can become stuck and stop blood flow, which is a medical emergency.
How do you know if you have a blood clot in your leg or not?
Deep vein thrombosis ( DVT ) occurs when a blood clot (thrombus) forms in one or more of your body’s deep veins, usually in your legs. Deep vein thrombosis can cause leg pain or swelling, but it can also occur without symptoms.
Does a blood clot in the leg hurt constantly?
A calf cramp caused by a DVT blood clot can feel like a charley horse, and like leg pain, the cramping sensation with DVT will persist and worsen over time.
How do you check for blood clots?
Venous ultrasound: This test uses sound waves to create a view of your veins. A Doppler ultrasound may be used to help visualize blood flow through your veins if the ultrasound results are inconclusive. If the ultrasound results are inconclusive, venography or MR angiography may be used.
Does drinking water help with blood clots?
Staying hydrated and drinking plenty of water can help to keep blood viscosity low, which is a strong predictor of cardiovascular events like heart attacks and blood clots.
What foods to avoid if you have blood clots?
Don’t: Eat the Wrong Foods Vitamin K can interfere with the effectiveness of blood thinners, so limit your intake of kale, spinach, Brussels sprouts, chard, collard, or mustard greens. Green tea, cranberry juice, and alcohol can also interfere with blood thinners, so talk to your doctor about them.
Is walking good for blood clots?
Walking, hiking, swimming, dancing, and jogging are all examples of aerobic activity that can help your lungs work better after a pulmonary embolism, and studies show that exercise can also help with DVT symptoms like swelling, discomfort, and redness.
How often should you move to avoid blood clots?
When traveling by plane or car, don’t sit still for long periods of time; move around every 2 hours or so. Wear loose clothing and drink plenty of water.
Do blood clot symptoms come and go?
Symptoms of a blood clot in the leg include: persistent pain that does not come and go like a pulled muscle; a red or raw tender area of skin, usually below the back of the knee; and veins that feel hard or swollen when touched.
Can a blood clot go away on its own?
Blood clots can form on their own within a blood vessel due to hypercoagulation, which requires medical treatment. Small clots are normal and disappear on their own; however, some blood clots become larger than necessary or form in places where there is no injury.
Should I take aspirin if I think I have a blood clot?
NSAIDs (non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs) taken orally or topically may help control symptoms in clots close to the skin’s surface without the use of blood thinners. Aspirin is not recommended as a treatment for thrombophlebitis.
When should I worry about leg pain?
If you have a leg injury with a deep cut or exposed bone or tendon, are unable to walk or put weight on your leg, or have pain, swelling, redness, or warmth in your calf, call 911 or go to the nearest emergency room.
How do you treat a blood clot in the leg at home?
You can try the following at home to relieve the pain and swelling of a DVT:
- Wear graduated compression stockings, which are specially fitted stockings that are tight at the feet and gradually looser up the leg, creating gentle pressure that keeps blood from pooling and clotting.