Deep vein thrombosis (DVT) is a serious medical condition where a blood clot (thrombus) forms in one or more of the deep veins in your body, usually the legs.
This condition is not life-threatening UNLESS a small piece of the clot (called an embolus) breaks off, travels in the bloodstream and becomes lodged in a vital blood vessel, blocking the blood supply. Death can then result.
What does it feel like?
A number of issues and symptoms can arise as a result of DVT, including:
Pain and tenderness in the leg (typically the calf muscle)
Pain which is made worse with exercise
Slight increase in tissue temperature
Lower leg, ankle and/or foot swelling
Please note that DVT is silent in up to 50% of cases.
What causes or contributes to DVT?
Some factors causing people to be more prone to DVT are:
History of previous thrombosis
Recent surgery (particularly hip and knee)
Use of oral contraceptives
Sitting for long periods of time
Prolonged bed rest
High cholesterol levels.
Can a DVT be treated?
There are a variety of treatments for DVT including:
Blood thinners (medication)
Clot busters (medication)
If you are experiencing any of the symptoms related to DVT, come into Riverside Podiatry for a full assessment of your lower limbs, ankles and feet.
Your podiatrist at Riverside Podiatry will perform a vascular assessment to check the blood flow coming to and going from your feet. If your podiatrist is concerned or suspects a DVT, you will either be advised to go straight to your local emergency department, or to your doctor where they will request a non-invasive colour duplex ultrasound or another form of imaging.
If you are experiencing any of the following signs and symptoms of a pulmonary embolism, please go straight to your local emergency department: