Blood Clot Specialist Hinesville GA
Northeast Georgia Heart Center
Cardiology, Cardiovascular Disease
Medical School: Univ Of Dublin, Trinity Coll, Sch Of Physic, Dublin, Ireland
Graduation Year: 1968
Emory Healthcare Inc
Athens Cardiology Group PC
Cardiology, Cardiovascular Disease
Medical School: In Univ Sch Of Med, Indianapolis In 46202
Graduation Year: 1987
Healing Blood Clots Naturally
By Dan Orzech
While on a 10-day camping trip in the backwoods of West Virginia, Rusty Neithammer noticed his calf starting to swell. It didn’t hurt, and Neithammer, a 45-year-old electrical engineer, shrugged it off as an insect bite. Back home, however, his doctor sent him to get an ultrasound. The diagnosis: deep vein thrombosis or DVT. In layman’s terms, a blood clot.
Neithammer was lucky. The clot could have killed him. He’d gone to the doctor not so much for his leg, but because he’d noticed shortness of breath while hiking. Part of the blood clot had broken off and traveled from his leg to his lungs. Doctors call this a pulmonary embolism—a blockage of blood flow to the lungs—and each year, more than 200,000 people in the US die from it.
Over a lifetime, you have roughly a one in 20 chance of getting DVT—which equates to about 2 million Americans annually. Not all of those blood clots break free, although more than half a million Americans end up in the hospital to treat either the clot or a pulmonary embolism. And not everyone is satisfied with the current standard of treatment. Some DVT patients—Neithammer included—are searching for alternative remedies.
Pump it up
In most cases, doctors don’t really know what causes DVT. Researchers are, however, beginning to identify factors that increase your risk for them. Powerful calf, quad, and hamstring muscles surround the veins in our legs. Along with making movement possible, the action of these muscles pumps blood back to the heart. When we sit or lie still for too long, blood may pool in the legs, providing an opportunity for the stagnant blood to congeal and clot. That puts immobilized hospital patients at risk, but even sitting still for shorter periods—on an airplane flight, for example—may pose a problem. A number of studies in the past few years point to airline travel as a potential contributor to DVT, and some international carriers now suggest passengers get up and move their legs as much as possible. Being trapped and immobilized behind a snoring passenger in the aisle seat may not be the only danger you face, however. Changes in air pressure or oxygen levels in planes may also up your risk for DVT. A 2006 study in the British medical journal Lancet found that people on an eight-hour flight were more likely to get blood clots than people sitting in a movie theater for the same period. But other studies using pressure chambers to simulate the changes in air pressure inside an airplane didn’t find the same risk. Traveling by car, train, or bus also predisposes you to clots.
Other risk factors exist as well. Pregnant women are five times more likely to develop DVT, apparently because the body ups the blood’s tendency to clot to prevent excessive bleeding during childbirth. The estrogen in birth-control pills also facilitates clotting and puts women at a three to six times higher risk than women not on the Pill. The Factor V Leiden gene (which you can get tested for) p...
Author: Dan Orzech
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A.S.P.E.N Clinical Nutrition Week 2014 - American Society for Parenteral and Enteral Nutrition
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