Condition: Pulmonary Embolism

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Members in the community range from 2 to 63 years old

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About Pulmonary Embolism

A Pulmonary Embolism is the blockage of one of the arteries in the lungs. Pulmonary arteries bring blood from the heart to the lungs where oxygenation occurs. When the arteries are blocked a pulmonary embolism and associated complications arise. 100,000 people in the United States experience pulmonary embolisms each year. It is the 3rd most common cause of death in hospitalized patients. If left untreated, about 1/3 of pulmonary embolisms will result in death, usually within 24 hours of the embolism. Over 90% of Pulmonary Embolisms are caused by blood clots which traveled to the pulmonary arteries from the leg or the pelvis. Deep Vein Thrombosis (DVT) and Pelvic Vein Thrombosis (PVT) are the conditions of having blood clots in your legs or your pelvis respectively. Both DVT and PVT are highly associated with Pulmonary Embolisms. Because of this Pulmonary Embolisms are sometimes referred to as Venous Thromboembolism's. Rarely a Pulmonary embolism can be caused by an air bubble or other tissue. Symptoms of Pulmonary Embolisms include difficulty breathing, low blood oxygen levels, coughing, coughing up blood and damage to organ and lung tissue from lack of oxygen. If the embolism is large or if there are many blockages there is a high risk of death. Diagnosis can be done through medical history checks, lab tests (D-Dimer Test) or imaging (CT pulmonary angiography). It is crucial to see a doctor immediately if a Pulmonary Embolism is suspected. The first priorities in treating a pulmonary embolism are to prevent the clot from getting any bigger and to prevent more clots from forming. Anticoagulent medication (which prevents blood clots from forming) is often started immediately. The most popular drugs contain either herapin or warfarin. If the pulmonary embolism is serious surgical intervention may be necessary. Medication is required continuously for up to 6 months after a Pulmonary Embolism. Risk factors for pulmonary embolism include DVT, PVT, and other factors which may increase the risk of blood clot. Elderly people, pregnant women, sedentary people (immobilized for long periods of air travel or after surgery), and obese people are especially prone to blood clots.

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Read what others are saying about Pulmonary Embolism

My INR numbers got to a good level within 7 days of treatment. Began with Lovanox injection while in the hospital, and now am on 4 mg. daily of warfarin. No bleeding gums or excessive bleeding with cuts, etc. Very pleased.6/20/2013 at 08:32 PM
Was this review helpful? Yes
Complete exhaustion and inability to concentrate on anything. Not a daily occurrence, but often enough to curb my normal activities at least 4 days a week. Try to sleep during the day, but too restless. No energy to do anything.6/20/2013 at 08:30 PM
Was this review helpful? Yes
Lower levels of blood oxygen, combined with lower levels of physcial activity capabilities, result in greater feelings of fatigue.2/8/2012 at 12:07 PM
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Chills commonly associated with a low grade fever.2/8/2012 at 12:06 PM
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Knife in the ribs2/8/2012 at 12:05 PM
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Last updated on Apr 13 2019 at 05:10
Disclaimer: The list and ratings above are for informational purposes only, and is intended to supplement, not substitute for, the expertise and judgment of your physician, pharmacist or other healthcare professional. The goal of the information is to provide you with a comprehensive view of all available treatments, but should not be construed to indicate that use of any one treatment is safe, appropriate, or effective for you. Decisions about use of a new treatment, or about a change in your current treatment plan, should be in consultation with your doctor or other healthcare professional.