One of the most important things for you to understand about deep vein thrombosis, otherwise known as DVT for short, is that there are both superficial and deep veins in your arms and legs.
Worried You Have Deep Vein Thrombosis (DVT)?
If a blood clot is allowed to form in the deep veins in particular, this could potentially bring life-threatening complications with it - meaning that this is one situation you want to get checked out as soon as you can.
A blood clot itself is so dangerous in this context because if a piece of the blood clot breaks off and travel through the blood stream, it could become lodged in the heart or travel to your lungs- thus forming what is called a pulmonary embolism.
How to Check Yourself at Home
If you're interested in giving yourself a self evaluation for DVT at home, you can use what is referred to as Homan's sign test.
Step 1: Actively extend the knee in the leg you want to check.
Step 2: Once your knee is in the position, you'll want someone to help you raise your leg to 10 degrees.
Step 3: Have them passively and abruptly squeeze your calf with one hand while flexing your foot with the other.
If you experience any type of deep calf pain or tenderness during this process, you may have DVT and you should absolutely consult with a medical professional moving forward.
Symptoms of a DVT to Look out for
Generally speaking, some of the most important warning signs of a blood clot or symptoms of DVT in your leg include ones like:
Pain in the impacted area.
Swelling around the veins.
A feeling of warmth.
A tenderness to the touch.
Redness of the leg or arm.
Some blood clots present with no symptoms at all. The only way to diagnose the condition with 100% certainty is by way of a blood test, which will then be followed up with via ultrasound or some other types of imaging tests.
Can DVT Be Treated at Home?
You cannot treat DVT at home, it is a serious medical condition that requires proper medical care and supervision to first address the underlying issue of any potential blood clots. Then, you'll be prescribed what are know as anticoagulants, or blood thinners. These can help prevent any clots you may already have from growing, while stopping new ones from forming in the future. You can definitely take these medications at home and you are safe to do so, but there are no vein treatments or vein procedures for DVT that you can do entirely at home in a traditional sense.
You'll also want to make any lifestyle changes recommended by your doctor to reduce the risk of developing additional blood clots in the future.
Precautions to Take During COVID When Scheduling an Appointment
When coming in for an appointment for your DVT or for any other reason, it's important to take appropriate precautions given everything going on in the world right now with the COVID-19 pandemic. It is always recommended that patients wear a mask when arriving, for example. Likewise, hand sanitizer will be freely available for you to use in the office if you haven't brought any of your own.
Beyond that, we want you to know that our CVR Center is cleaned frequently - allowing you to rest easy knowing that we're doing everything in our power to help keep everyone safe.
Meet Dr. Ives in Anchorage, Alaska
DVT can certainly be a difficult condition to live with - but it's important for you to know that this is one road you do not have to travel down alone. If you have any additional questions about DVT, or if you'd just like to speak to someone about your own situation in a bit more detail, please click here to schedule your appointment and meet Dr. Ives in Anchorage, AK. You can also click here to view our varicose vein treatment options and to find out more information about the innovative solutions that are available to you.