Deep vein thrombosis or DVT is a blood clot that forms in a vein deep in the body. These types of blood clots occur when blood thickens and clumps together. Most of these deep vein blood clots occur in the lower leg or thigh. They may also occur in other parts of the body. The dangerous aspect of these blood clots is that they can break off and travel through the bloodstream.
A loose deep vein blood clot is called an “embolus.” When the clot travels to the lungs and blocks blood flow, that condition is known as a pulmonary embolism. So, essentially, misdiagnosed or undiagnosed deep vein thrombosis can lead to more dangerous conditions such as pulmonary embolisms and other complications.
Deep vein thrombosis can occur when the vein’s inner lining is damaged as a result of injuries, surgery, inflammation or an immune response. It can also occur when blood flow is sluggish or slow and when blood thickens and clots. About half of the people with deep vein thrombosis have symptoms. These symptoms will usually occur in the leg that is affected by the deep vein clot. Symptoms include:
Swelling of the leg or along a vein in the leg
Pain or tenderness in the leg
Increased warmth or burn in the area of the leg that is swollen or in pain
Red or discolored skin on the leg
Doctors will usually diagnose deep vein thrombosis based on your medical history, a physical exam and test results. Doctors will also be able to identify your risk factors and rule out other causes for your symptoms. The most common tests that are used to diagnose deep vein thrombosis include ultrasound, a D-dimer test and venography. An ultrasound used sound waves to create images of the blood flowing through the arteries and veins in the affected leg. A D-dimer test basically measures a substance in the blood that is released when a blood clot dissolves. Venography is probably the most invasive procedure where dye is injected into a vein using a catheter and an X-ray is taken of the leg and the affected vein.
If you or a loved one has suffered serious injury or death because your doctor failed to diagnose deep vein thrombosis, please call the experienced Philadelphia DVT misdiagnosis lawyers at Anapol Schwartz to find out more about your legal rights and options. Our consultations are always free and confidential. We will fight for your rights and utilize our medical and forensic experts to analyze all the medical information and data available to bolster your case and help you receive the compensation you are due.