Transfusion Medicine

The researches find that the most common cause of cardiovascular death in Europe, after heart attack and stroke, contributing to more than 350,000 deaths each year. A blood clot (thrombus) in a deep vein, usually in the legs, is dislodged and travels to the lungs where it blocks one or more vessels. Therefore This typically occurs if the vein wall is damage, blood flow is too slow, or the blood becomes too thick. Major surgery such as knee or hip replacement; serious injury, prolonge bed rest and cancer are common risk factors for acute pulmonary embolism. It can also happen after long travel and in women who are pregnant or taking the oral contraceptive pill.

Blood Clot In A Deep Vein

“Symptoms including shortness of breath and chest pain resemble other diseases so the diagnosis is often miss, or the severity of the situation is underestimat, and many patients die before getting appropriate therapy;” said Professor Stavros Konstantinides, Chairperson of the guidelines Task Force and medical director; Centre for Thrombosis and Haemostasis, Johannes Gutenberg University Mainz, Germany.

The guidelines clarify how to diagnose acute pulmonary embolism step by step. The process begins with clinical suspicion based on symptoms combined with blood tests (D-dimers). Depending on the severity and urgency of the scenario, a computed tomography (CT); scan may be use to visualise the lung vessels; or cardiac ultrasound to look at the heart chambers. A new table shows how CT scans and lung scans compare in their ability to diagnose or exclude pulmonary embolism, and how much radiation the patient receives with each of these tests.

Force and medical director

“The aim is to get to the diagnosis as reliably and quickly as possible; in order to start lifesaving therapy and prevent other clots from reaching the lungs,” said Professor Guy Meyer; Co-Chairperson of the guidelines Task Force and respiratory medicine physician, Hôpital Européen Georges-Pompidou, Paris, France. Anticoagulant drugs (blood thinners) help the body dissolve clots and reopen the blocked vessels. If the patient is in shock and about to collapse; the clot must be removed immediately, and this can be achieved using thrombolytic drugs (clot busters); catheters, or surgery.

The guidelines recommend how to judge the severity of pulmonary embolism based on a combination of clinical, imaging and laboratory results. This will dictate whether blood thinners alone are sufficient or if clot busters, a catheter intervention, or surgical removal is necessary. But There is new advice on how to distinguish; in the CT scan; fresh thrombi in the lungs from chronic obstructions due to a disease called chronic thromboembolic pulmonary hypertension (CTEPH); which requires a different type of therapy.