A pulmonary embolism is a blockage in one of the pulmonary arteries that reside in the lungs. This frightening health condition happens when blood clots travel to the lungs from as far as the legs. Pulmonary embolisms can be serious enough to cause life-threatening problems. This usually ends up happening if a blood clot blocks the flow of blood to the lungs.
A common symptom of a pulmonary embolism is shortness of breath, which can typically begin out of nowhere and can feel as if you’re being stabbed in the chest when you take a deep breath. This leads us to our next common symptom, chest pain. This pain does not feel like acid reflux pain but instead as if you are having a heart attack. The third most common sign of a possible pulmonary embolism is having a cough that produces bloody spit. Some other symptoms that can occur include numbness and tingling in your extremities, difficulty digesting food or loss of appetite, sweating excessively, severe leg pain and/or swelling, a much faster heartbeat than normal, high blood pressure and possible dizziness.
Treatment for pulmonary embolism include having to take prescriptions like blood thinners to prevent any new clots from forming within the body period. Of course, this is the main cause of the diagnosis. Treatment also calls for clot dissolvers but it can be very dangerous to give these to anyone just because it can cause excessive bleeding internally.
If the clot is too large for blood thinners, then the doctors usually remove the problem surgically. This is an extremely life-threatening procedure. The doctors would insert a catheter into the vein that stretches from your leg to your heart. This catheter is used to extract the the larger clot by suctioning it out of your artery.
Some very useful and informative resources for pulmonary embolisms diagnosis and care can be found on the internet. Although there are many different options for you to explore, remember that the best place to get answers is from yourdoctor. If you are interested in doing your own research and becoming more informed, a popular option to check out is WebMD. This website offers a symptom checker as well as information that can help you take care of yourself better and advice on seeking treatment.
Another very useful website for resources on pulmonary embolisms is the Mayo Clinic. This website has some amazing articles available to read but it is a website for an actual clinic. So, while you’re searching up the information that you’re so badly needing to know without the doctor’s input you can schedule that appointment after you are finished.
What you should do if you suspect you may have this issue is to write down a detailed list of your symptoms, when they began and any other changes to your daily life. The more information your doctor has the better they will be able to help determine if you do have a pulmonary embolism.