Deep Vein Thrombosis can affect anyone anywhere. DVT occurs when a blood clot forms in one of the deep veins of your body, usually in your legs, but sometimes in your arms.
In 2014, suddenly and tragically, I lost my delightful and very humorous friend David to Deep Vein Thrombosis and then just a month later, I suffered the misfortune of acquiring a blood clot myself.
I was very lucky. My condition was easily diagnosed and the wonderful National Health Service was exceptionally quick to provide the necessary treatment.
I have no medical knowledge and I write this account based on personal experience, but there appears to be a very dangerous grey area between the patient developing DVT and urgently making contact with medical experts.
If you are developing DVT you might experience cramping pain, redness, warmth or swelling in your limb. Symptoms of a pulmonary embolism (blood clot in the lung) are breathlessness, chest pain, fainting or coughing up blood.
People who are immobile after recent operations and/or those with respiratory conditions are particularly at risk. Why? Well, I could clearly see that my leg had inexplicably swollen to the size of a baby rhinoceros, but for individuals who have already suffered other minor injuries, the identification of a secondary problem may be less obvious. After trauma or an operation you may already feel pain, unwell and weary. How could you possibly know there is something else wrong with your body?
My blood clot was cured and there is a minimum impact to my working life or social activities, so suffering from DVT is not necessarily something to be frightened of. However, left without medical treatment, blood clots are extremely dangerous.
DVT is not just associated with air travel, old age, or poor health, it can happen to healthy, active people who live in an ordinary northern town. This message is about awareness and the following links provides support for you, your family and friends. Keep vigilant and keep safe.