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Deep vein thrombosis - discharge

DVT - discharge; Blood clot in the legs - discharge; Thromboembolism - discharge; Venous thromboembolism - deep vein thrombosis; Post-phlebitic syndrome - discharge; Post-thrombotic syndrome - discharge

You were treated for deep vein thrombosis (DVT). This is a condition in which a blood clot forms in a vein that is not on or near the surface of the body.

It mainly affects the large veins in the lower leg and thigh. The clot can block blood flow. If the clot breaks off and moves through the bloodstream, it can get stuck in the blood vessels in the lungs.

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Pressure stockings

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Self-care

Wear the pressure stockings if prescribed by your doctor. They may improve blood flow in your legs and may lower your risk for long-term complications and problems with blood clots.

Your doctor may give you medicine to thin your blood to help keep more clots from forming. The drugs warfarin (Coumadin), rivaroxaban (Xarelto), and apixaban (Eliquis) are examples of blood thinners. If you're prescribed a blood thinner:

Ask your provider what exercises and other activities are safe for you to do.

DO NOT sit or lie down in the same position for long periods.

If swelling is a problem, keep your legs resting above your heart. When sleeping, make the foot of the bed a few inches higher than the head of the bed.

When traveling:

DO NOT smoke. If you do, ask your provider for help quitting.

Drink at least 6 to 8 cups (1.5 to 2 liters) of liquid a day, if your provider says it is OK.

Use less salt.

When to Call the Doctor

Call your doctor if:

Related Information

Pulmonary embolus
Deep vein thrombosis
Blood clots
Duplex ultrasound
Platelet count
Prothrombin time (PT)
Partial thromboplastin time (PTT)
Tips on how to quit smoking
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Heart attack - discharge

References

Kearon C, Akl EA, Ornelas J, et al. Antithrombotic therapy for VTE disease: CHEST guideline and expert panel report. Chest. 2016;149(2):315-352. PMID: 26867832 www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/26867832.

Kline JA. Pulmonary embolism and deep vein thrombosis. In: Walls RM, Hockberger RS, Gausche-Hill M, eds. Rosen's Emergency Medicine: Concepts and Clinical Practice. 9th ed. Philadelphia, PA: Elsevier; 2018:chap 78.

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Review Date: 1/31/2018  

Reviewed By: Todd Gersten, MD, Hematology/Oncology, Florida Cancer Specialists & Research Institute, Wellington, FL. Review provided by VeriMed Healthcare Network. Also reviewed by David Zieve, MD, MHA, Medical Director, Brenda Conaway, Editorial Director, and the A.D.A.M. Editorial team.

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