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Blood and Blood Vessel Message Board

Blood and Blood Vessel Board Index

My Blood Clot Story
Mar 23, 2014
One day I woke with a pain in my forearm. It was slightly tender to the touch, but other wise no symptoms. I was just vaguely aware of the pressure. I left it for a while, just assuming that I slept in an awkward position. It progressively got worse. It began to get swollen, red, and it hurt to do simple things like bend my arm. I was planned on going to a walk-in-clinic, but had an eerie feeling that I should go to the ER.

I went to the ER, assuming that it was just an internal bruise (hematoma) even though I had no history of recent trauma, but the triage nurse checked my vitals, my arm, gave me a triage code of 4 (5 is the highest). The doctor saw my arm since I did not fit the traditional risk factors (recent travel, recent surgery etc), initially thought it might be inflammation, or a superficial clot. He still referred me for further diagnostic testing and it verify deep vein thrombosis (blood clot) in my arm. Even with my untrained eye, I could see the huge clot on the ultrasound. I also had some emboli (smaller clots that broke free) in my arm.

So after it was confirmed that I had DVT, my blood was tested to get a baseline INR level. The INR tests your blood clotting. Then I was given an IV of heparin and pills Warfarin (brand name Coumadin). I had to stay in the hospital for observation. After the initial treatment, I was given a lower molecular heparin (lovenox) which you get an injection in the stomach and continued with wafarin. With the lower molecular heparin, I was able to go home. Still, I had to go back to the hospital every day to get my medication injections, pills, and get my INR levels test. It seems like everyday the dosage was adjusted. Once my levels reached the desired range and was stably in that range, I was given a prescription and forwarded to my family doctor.

So right now I am at the family doctor stage. I get my INR levels test less frequently, but I still need to get it tested. I will probably be on blood thinners for the next 6 months. Now, with the family doctor they are looking issues that may contribute to blood clots (cholesterol, diabetes etc). I hope to get those results soon.

To sum it all up, if you believe you have the symptoms of DVT, definitely get it checked out. I thought it was something minor and I was just going to neglect it, but I'm glad I didn't. It could have been much more serious and I could have had a stroke or an pulmonary embolism.

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