Guard Agains Varicose Veins and DVT

June is Men’s Health Month.  It is the goal of Support Hose Plus to heighten the awareness of preventable leg health problems for men and to encourage men to wear their support socks to prevent leg health problems.

Most men think varicose veins are just a cosmetic problem (a woman thing), however varicose veins are just as detrimental to men’s leg health as women’s leg health.

Here are some reasons men should choose to wear support socks or support thigh highs:

  • Tired achy legs
  • Heavy legs
  • Swollen legs
  • Leg pain from prolonged sitting or standing
  • Dull, aching pain in legs
  • Tingling, numbness, burning or cramping in the legs and feet
  • Legs “fall asleep” often
  • Spider veins
  • Varicose veins
  • Reddish discoloration of the skin
  • Hardened skin on the lower leg
  • Patches of dry skin on the lower leg
  • Open sores on the lower leg that do not heal
  • Family history of venous disease
  • Travel (to prevent a deadly Deep Vein Thrombosis)
  • Surgery (to prevent a deadly Deep Vein Thrombosis)
  • Orthostatic Hypotension ( a form of low that happens when you stand up from sitting or lying down…dizzy spell)
  • Injury

Men seem to be very self-conscious of wearing support socks, but many professional athletes know the value of wearing a compression sock. Can you imagine if one of the valued players of the NBA got a DVT because he did not wear compression when he traveled or had an injury to his leg? Not only would he be on out of the game, but his whole team would be put at disadvantage.

Think of the professional athlete…ProBasketballAthlete

  • As he travels long distances to compete, he wears compression socks. He definitely does not want to arrive at an event for which he has been training to be knocked out of competition by a blood clot (deep vein thrombosis).
  • During his competition he wants to be at his best. Performance athletic socks increase arterial flow, reduce muscle strain, decreases exertion, and reduces skin temperature.
  • After he has completed his competition he wants a speedy recovery, so he wears his recovery socks to help get the lactic acid out of the muscle so there is less muscle soreness.

weekendwarriorsYou may be a “week-end warrior” not a professional athlete, but you can also appreciate what support socks can do for your sporting activities as well as your everyday living. Why should the you not have the same advantages as the athlete? By taking action to wear an appropriate compression garment, you could prevent more serious problems which ultimately could affect your quality of life as well as your family.

weekendwarrior

It is not just the week-end warriors that need the support socks. All males can use compression socks to increase circulation and guard against varicose veins and DVT everyday. I want the best for the males in my life. They are just as important to me as the valued NBA player is to his team. So lets encourage all the men we know to visit with their physician if they have any problems listed above and wear their support socks faithfully.  Remember, you can always call one of the SupportHosePlus.com Certified Fitters on our toll-free number, 1-844-472-8807, for assistance with the selection of a garment.

Hope all of our loved ones have healthy legs,

Vanda Lancour

Deep Vein Thrombosis (DVT) Through the Ages

I have addressed Deep Vein Thrombosis (DVT), its causes, how it can be recognized, and treatments many times. I thought we might review the history of treatment of DVT.

The first documented case of DVT occurred more than 700 years ago in the middle ages. A 20 year old Norman cobbler, Raoul, developed unilateral edema in the ankle and calf which the moved up to the thigh. His physician advised him to “wait and see”. Raoul’s symptoms worsened and he developed a leg ulcer. He visited St Eloi’s shrine, without any improvement. Then he visited the tomb of King Saint Louis. He spent some time in prayer to no avail. He then decided to collect the dust he found below the stone that covered tomb. He applied the dust direct to the ulcer. The story reports he was miraculously healed and was still alive 11 years later. After this story of Raoul, there was increased mention of DVT especially in pregnant and postpartum women.

During the Renaissance physicians thought that pregnancy-related DVT (leading or only cause of DVT) was the result of “evil humors”. It was thought that postpartum DVT was caused by retention of unconsumed milk in the legs (‘milk leg’). Therefore in the late 1700’s breast-feeding was encouraged to prevent DVT.

From 1784 – 1920’s treatment was evidence based. In 1676 Wiseman suggested DVT was a consequence of alteration of blood. In 1793 Hunter hypothesized it was a occlusion of a vein by blood clots. In 1784 Hunter performed ligations (ties) above the blood clot to prevent extension of the clot. Because there was no other treatment for Pulmonary Embolism (PE) this became widely used at the end of the 19th century. This could be done at the femoral, common femoral, iliac or inferior vena cava. Used until mid 20th century along with anticoagulants after they became available.

Iron Splints

Since there was great fear of the blood clot migrating and becoming a PE, strict bed rest was prescribed and was the
cornerstone of DVT treatment from the end of the 19th century. Patient’s limbs were set in iron splints to prevent movement and special inclining beds were used to increase venous return.

Inclining Bed

During the 19th century it was thought that DVT was caused by inflammation of the vein wall, fever, postpartum and after septic surgical procedure. Treatment included anti-inflammatory medication and treatment for infection. Blood letting was popular (especially with leeches) as well as cupping, purging, applying ice or prescribed cold bath. These treatments started becoming obsolete in early 1900’s. Prior to 1930’s (before anticoagulant therapy) treatment was bed rest to fix thrombus, elevation and now application of heat with warm compresses to increase collateral circulation and reduce venous spasm. In hospitals Wright describes the preventative measures such as early ambulation, elastic compression, avoidance of dehydration and tightly applied adhesive strapping.

Next week we will continue with the last 100 years. In the meantime, keep wearing your support stockings and support socks!

Vanda
www.supporthoseplus.com

Who Looks Out For The Security of Your Legs

Spring has officially arrived here in the Northern Hemisphere or has it. A couple who are friends have returned to their home on the Upper Peninsula (UP) of Michigan after a lengthy vacation traveling the nice warm southern United States and are questioning their decision to return at this time. They shared on Facebook that they woke up to snow on the deck, the bay is still frozen and it was 35 degrees. For the rest of us the spring time weather like here in Amarillo, Texas gives us the travel bug.

If you are flying, airport security will be looking out for your safe flight by checking for bombs in shoes, explosives in hats, and (oh, of course) the .357 magnum that someone “forgot” to take out of their carry on bag. But what are you doing to make sure you arrive at your destination safely and are not attacked by enemies of a differ kind, Deep Vein Thrombosis (DVT) or the even more deadly Pulmonary Embolism (PA).  Either one can ruin a wonderful vacation. It is not just flying that can create these enemies… any travel by car, bus, or train that lasts 5 hours or longer is a candidate for creating these vacation ruining enemies. 

Air travel has been put on the most wanted poster more times because you are sandwiched between two other travelers, you are sitting, and sitting, and sitting in very dry, low-pressure air with lower than normal oxygen levels. Your legs are bent in the same position for hours and the seat you are sitting in for your safety is constructed with a fairly rigid  metal frame which is cutting into the back of your legs compressing the popliteal vein and slowing down the blood returning to your heart. It is at this point that you become a great candidate for a DVT. As I said, you do not have to be on a plane for this to occur…all you have to do is travel for long distances in the same position. Sitting can be dangerous for your health!

Lets make your journey one you remember because of the wonderful time you have and not because you encountered your enemies DVT and PA. Begin by choosing support socks (knee high will usually be appropriate) that will aid in returning the blood in your lower extremity back to your heart. If you have no swelling in your legs, no predisposition for developing a DVT then a 15-20mmHg compression will probably be adequate.  

Following is a list of factors that increase the risk of developing DVT:

  • Injury to a vein, often caused by:
    • Fractures
    • Severe muscle injury
    • Major surgery (especially of the abdomen, pelvis, hip, or legs)
  • Slow blood flow, often caused by:
    • Confinement to bed (possibly due to a medical condition or after surgery)
    • Limited movement (a cast on an extremity to help heal a injured bone)
    • Sitting for a long time, especially with crossed legs
    • Paralysis
    • Sedate lifestyle
  • Increased estrogen:
    • Birth control pills
    • Hormone replacement therapy, sometimes used after menopause
    • Pregnancy, for up to 6 weeks after giving birth
  • Certain Chronic medical illnesses:
    • Heart disease
    • Lung disease
    • Cancer and its treatment
    • Inflammatory bowl disease (Crohn’s disease or ulcerative colitis)
  • Other facts that increase the risk of DVT include:
    • Previous DVT or PE
    • Family history of DVT or PE
    • Age (risk increases as age increases)
    • Obesity
    • A catheter located in a central vein
    • Inherited clotting disorders
    • Varicose veins

If you swell when you are not traveling or are predisposed to developing a DVT, you should choose a 20-30mmHg compression or discuss this with your physician. It is up to you to be proactive to make sure your legs arrive safely.

Here’s to a wonderful journey and thanks for shopping SupportHosePlus.com,

Vanda

PS: Next week things you can do when you travel that can save your life.

March is DVT Awareness Month – Symptoms of DVT

This month is DVT Awareness Month and we have been addressing different aspects of this malady. This week we are looking at symptoms of DVT. While most victims of DVT
(Deep Vein Thrombosis- blood clots in the deep veins) are 60 years or older, DVT can strike anyone – young or old – athlete or sedate – especially if they have risk factors. DVT is the silent killer and may present with minimal symptoms. Age, family history, obesity, immobility, pregnancy, recent surgery or injury to the hips or knees, contraceptive pills, and hormone replacement therapy are some risk factors that make a DVT more likely to occur.

Signs and Symptoms of DVT

  • Pain in the leg or pelvis region
  • Tenderness and swelling of the leg
  • Discoloration of the leg (reddish)
  • Areas of the leg or pelvis region that feel warm to touch
  • Whole leg swelling

Symptoms of DVT can be similar to other conditions, like a pulled muscle or “Charlie horse” and can delay diagnosis. Some people may have no symptoms.

Blood clots are more common in the left leg, possibly because the femoral artery in that leg passes anterior to the vein, and may compress the vein. Symptoms of a DVT from travel do not always develop immediately after travel, but more likely within three days of arrival at your destination.Symptoms may not manifest themselves for up to two weeks after a long trip

Potential complication of a DVT is the possibility of a Pulmonary Embolism (PE). A PE happens when a piece of the blood clot breaks off and travels through the bloodstream and becomes lodged in the lung.

Signs and Symptoms of Pulmonary Embolism

  • Sudden shortness of breath
  • Chest pain-sharp, stabbing: may get worse with deep breath
  • Rapid heart rate
  • Unexplained cough, sometimes with bloody mucus

If you suspect a pulmonary embolism, call 911 or go to the nearest ER. Having this knowledge could save your life!

If you have associated risk factors, or want to help prevent the risk of developing a blood clot, it is important to wear gradient compression hose especially during travel due to prolonged immobility. Stockings also help to relieve swelling, pain and post thrombotic syndrome (PTS). PTS is a late complication of DVT in which signs and symptoms may include pain, edema, hyperpigmentation and skin ulceration. DVT treatments include anticoagulant medicines and surgery. If you want to help prevent the occurrence of a DVT you should look at your risk factors, exercise your legs, wear loose-fitting clothing, keep hydrated with water and wear graduated compression stockings.

You should become familiar with the symptoms of DVT so you may be your own activist.

Save a friend or loved one – tell them about DVT!

Vanda
PS Since we have the medi sale on, I thought I would share with you some of our favorite styles

medi Sheer and Soft attractive in appearance – only you will know they are medical support hose

medi Comfort  durable, discreet and semi-sheer – easier to don (put on) and doff (take off) because of the latest knitting technology

medi forMen styled and sized for men – available in regular and petite (short) lengthM

March is DVT Awareness Month – Risk Factors

About 2 million people experience DVT each year. It can affect anyone (male or female),at any age without warning. Deep Vein Thrombosis and Pulmonary Embolism (DVT/PE) are often under diagnosed. They are  serious, but preventable medical conditions. It is to your advantage if you know DVT risk factors. Some of the factors you can change and some of them you cannot.

Following is a list of factors that increase the risk of developing DVT:

  • Injury to a vein, often caused by:
    • Fractures
    • Severe muscle injury
    • Major surgery (especially of the abdomen, pelvis, hip, or legs)
  • Slow blood flow, often caused by:
    • Confinement to bed (possibly due to a medical condition or after surgery)
    • Limited movement (a cast on an extremity to help heal a injured bone)
    • Sitting for a long time, especially with crossed legs
    • Paralysis
    • Sedate lifestyle 

      mediMaternity
  • Increased estrogen:
    • Birth control pills
    • Hormone replacement therapy, sometimes used after menopause
    • Pregnancy, for up to 6 weeks after giving birth
  • Certain Chronic medical illnesses:
    • Heart disease
    • Lung disease
    • Cancer and its treatment
    • Inflammatory bowl disease (Crohn’s disease or ulcerative colitis)
  • Other facts that increase the risk of DVT include:
    • Previous DVT or PE
    • Family history of DVT or PE
    • Age (risk increases as age increases)
    • Obesity
    • A catheter located in a central vein
    • Inherited clotting disorders
    • Varicose veins

The more risk factors you have, the greater are your chances of developing a DVT. Change the risk factors you can to give yourself a better chance of not developing a DVT. If you have a muscle injury or you are scheduled for surgery, discuss the option of wearing a 20-30mmHg support stockings or support socks to prevent the DVT. When Rod and I have surgery we discuss this with our surgeons and receive their approval to bring our own 20-30mmHg garments (which we know fit correctly) rather than wear their TEDS!

If you have a sedate lifestyle or sit behind a computer, get up and move around at least once an hour. WALK!! WALK!! WALK!! If you have surgery, get up and move as soon as your physician gives you permission. Sometimes that is even the same day as surgery. According to a study from Oxford University, patients recovering from surgery are at a high risk of DVT for much longer than previously thought. In this study, it was found the likelihood of a patient to need hospital treatment for a DVT was 70 time higher than the norm. For those who had day surgery, the risk was 10 times higher than the norm. The danger was highest in the third week post-op, but continued for around 12 weeks.

If you are pregnant, start wearing support hose as soon as you learn of your pregnancy (learning to put them on during your first trimester helps you to put them on in that last trimester) and continue to wear them for at least 6 weeks after delivery. Besides the hormonal changes going on, there is also the weight of the baby on the saphenous veins which can cause decreased blood flow and the risk of DVT. Maternity panty hose not only increase the flow of blood by using gradient compression, but also lift the baby up off the veins and to some degree help the back.

Help keep your friends or loved ones in good health, tell them about DVT and how to prevent in by wearing compression hose or compression socks.

Here are a few tips to help you and your loved ones stay healthy:

  • Maintain a healthy weight.
  • If you smoke, quite. This is one of the greatest gifts you can give your loved ones.
  • Exercise your legs regularly when sitting or laying for long periods of time…This can be as simple as making figure 8’s with your feet or just walk for a few minutes.
  • When sitting, stretch you legs and change position frequently.
  • Take a deep breath frequently.
  • Elevate you legs whenever possible.
  • Be careful about chairs and leg rests that compress the calf or behind the knee.
  • Avoid excessive alcohol intake (it dehydrates the body).
  • Drink plenty of water.
  • Wear loose, non-binding clothes when traveling.
  • If you have family members with multiple DVT’s and they have been diagnosed as having a clotting disorder, consider being tested yourself.
  • If you are having surgery, discuss the possibility of DVT with your surgeon. Many are pleased that you areIf you are having surgery, discuss the possibility of DVT with your surgeon. proactive.
  • If you are pregnant, wear compression stockings during your pregnancy and for 6 weeks postpartum.
  • Above all…wear compression stockings or compression socks to increase you circulation

Let’s all get out there and let our friends know about DVT,

Vanda

March is DVT Awareness Month – What is a DVT

March is DVT Awareness Month. This month I would like to address DVT (deep vein thrombosis) to inform you and your loved ones what a DVT is, risk factors of a DVT, and the symptoms of DVT.  I want you to become an activist and recognize when medical attention should be obtained. Roughly 600,000 people in the United States are affected by DVT each year. Not all of these are hospitalized. We all fear AIDS, breast cancer and traffic accidents, but what about DVT?  DVT kills more people every year than these maladies combined!

So what is a DVT and how is it formed? The arteries transport the oxygen rich blood away from the heart which is a one way pump. The veins are thin-walled blood vessels that carry oxygen poor blood from the tissues back to the heart. In order to move the blood against gravity the leg In order to move the blood against gravity the leg   In order to move the blood against gravity the leg Calf Contraction and Relaxation muscles squeeze the deep veins to move the blood back to the lungs and heart.muscles squeeze the deep veins to move the blood back to the lungs and heart. Wear support hose to prevent DVTmuscles squeeze the deep veins to move the blood back to the lungs and heart. The human body has three types of veins; superficial veins which are the veins that are close to the skin (the ones that you can see), deep veins which lie within the muscle structure within the body and perforating veins which connect the deep veins to the superficial veins. The veins contain one-way valves for the return of the blood back to the heart. When these valves do not close, stagnation of the blood can occur and a deep vein thrombosis (DVT) can form most often near a venous valve. The DVT can permanently damage the vein wall and valve with scarring or fibrosis which can cause them to become incompetent resulting in reflux (backward) flow of blood and venous congestion. Compression socks and stockings work as a secondary pump and along with the calf muscles close the valves to move the blood back to the heart. Consult with your physician to determine if you have risk factors and seek advice on appropriate preventative measures, including the amount of compression to wear. We carry many compression socks and compression stockings which can help prevent DVT. Please check out our JobstMediSigvaris and Juzo support socks and support hose. Did you know all of the manufacturers offer a extensive line of garments which range from athletic socks, men’s dress and casual socks to women’s opaque and sheer thigh high stockings and pantyhose so that each of us can choose a style or styles that are targeted at our lifestyle?

Next week we look at Risk Factors for DVT…

Let’s all get out there and let our friends know about DVT,


Vanda
www.supporthoseplus.com

Santa Didn’t Wear His Support Socks

Hello To All,I Wish I Had Worn My Support Socks

Hope your Holiday season has been kinder to you than it was to our dear old friend Santa Clause. Santa forgot to wear his support socks for his whirl wind world trip and see how swollen his feet are!? If you have not been wearing your support socks or support stockings, your feet may look just like Santa’s and you may feel just as tired as Santa.

All kidding aside, when you take your get away this winter or spring be sure to wear your compression socks or compression stockings. The number of travel-related vein conditions is increasing each year. No matter how you travel, blood circulation in the lower extremity is reduced simply because you are sitting in one position. Symptoms such as heavy legs, leg pain, or swollen feet and ankles develop. The reduced circulation in the lower leg can lead to blood clots (DVT) or even worse the blood clots could break loose and travel to the lungs, resulting in a pulmonary embolism (PE) which can be deadly.

Blood clots are more common in the left leg, possibly because the femoral artery in that leg passes anterior to the vein, and may compress the vein. Symptoms do not usually develop immediately after travel, but more likely within three days of arrival at your destination. Symptoms may not manifest themselves for up to two weeks after a long trip. Symptoms include: pain in leg or pelvis, tenderness and swelling of the leg, discoloration of the leg (reddish), areas of the leg or pelvis region that feel warm to touch, or whole leg swelling.

DVT kills more people every year than AIDS, breast cancer, and traffic accidents combined. Don’t be like Santa, wear your support hose or support socks and arrive at your destination ready for a fun time!

Things You Can Do To Prevent DVT When You Travel

  • Wear comfortable, loose clothing
  • Get up and walk once every hour or two
  • Make figure eights and circles with your feet while seated
  • Breathe deeply frequently
  • Drink plenty of water (Avoid excessive alcohol intake – it dehydrates the body)
  • Elevate your feet when possible
  • Wear your support sock and stockings from Support Hose Plus

Just remember to wear support socks or support stockings when you travel and continue to wear them for the next few days after your arrival at your destination to make sure your legs return to normal size. Encourage friends or family who are traveling with you to do the same. (They may not know about the dangers of Travel Related DVT.) They may not have any problems, so a 15-20mmHg compression may be adequate for them.

Ho! Ho! Ho!
Happy Travels to You and Yours,

Vanda

March is DVT Awareness Month – DVT the Silent Killer

What you need to know about DVT

  • Some DVT’s are “silent” and may be present with minimal symptoms
  • Complications from DVT kill up to 200,000 people a year in the U.S…..more than AIDS and breast cancer combined
  • More people suffer from DVT annually than heart attack or stroke
  • DVT occurs in approximately two million Americans each year
  • While most victims are 60 years or older, DVT can strike anyone at risk
  • The leading medical factors that cause DVT are: injury, immobility, surgery and/or illness that may include cancer, clotting disorders, and inflammatory diseases
  • DVT most often occurs in hospitalized patients following surgery, individuals whose legs remain immobilized for long stretches of time, and individuals confined to bed for prolonged periods
  • Travelers who have had a DVT in the past and are considering travel with prolonged periods of sitting should wear prescription-strength compression stockings and walk every 30 minutes

    Keep a friend or loved one healthy-tell them about DVT

    Age, family history, obesity, immobility, pregnancy, recent surgery or injury to the hips or knees, contraceptive pills, and hormone replacement therapy are some risk factors that make a DVT more likely to occur. Potential complications of a DVT are the possibility of a PE, Pulmonary Embolism. A PE happens when a piece of the blood clot breaks off and travels through the bloodstream and becomes lodged in the lung. This may cause chest pain, shortness of breath and you should seek medical treatment.

    If you have associated risk factors, or want to help prevent the risk of developing a blood clot, it is important to wear gradient compression hose during air travel, long car, bus or train rides due to prolonged immobility. Stockings also help to relieve swelling, pain and post thrombotic syndrome. PTS is a late complication of DVT in which signs and symptoms may include pain, edema, hyperpigmentation and skin ulceration. Some additional DVT treatments include anticoagulant medicines and surgery. If you want to help prevent the occurrence of a DVT you should look at your risk factors, exercise your legs, wear loose-fitting clothing, keep hydrated with water and wear graduated compression stockings.

    So, what is a DVT and how is it formed?

    The arteries transport the oxygen rich blood away from the heart. The veins are thin-walled blood vessels that carry oxygen poor blood from the tissues back to the heart. In order to move the blood against gravity the leg muscles squeeze the deep veins to move the blood back to the lungs and heart. The human body has three types of veins; superficial veins which are the veins that are close to the skin (the ones that you can see), deep veins which lie within the muscle structure within the body and perforating veins which connect the deep veins to the superficial veins. The perforating veins contain one-way valves for the return of the blood back to the heart. A deep vein thrombosis (DVT) is caused when a blood clot is formed within the deep veins. This most often occurs near a venous valve. The DVT can permanently damage the vein wall and valve with scarring or fibrosis which can cause them to become incompetent resulting in reflux (backward) flow of blood and venous congestion. A DVT can be dangerous because a fragment can break loose from the deep vein, travel through the vein and lodge in the lungs causing a pulmonary embolism. Consult with your physician to determine if you have risk factors and seek advice on appropriate prophylactic (preventative) measures, including the amount of compression to wear. If you experience these symptoms it would be best to seek a physician for advice. If your physician diagnoses deep vein thrombosis this can be effectively treated.

      In summary, here are a few suggestions to combat the possibility of developing a DVT:

    • Exercise your legs
    • Wear loose fitting clothing
    • Drink plenty of water Elevate legs when possible
    • Wear gradient compression hosiery
    • Stretch and exercise your legs at least once every hour, especially when traveling
      Additionally, the signs and symptoms of deep vein thrombosis include:

    • Pain in the leg
    • Leg tenderness
    • Edema
    • Increased warmth of the leg
    • Redness in the leg (hyperpigmentation)
    • Change in color of one leg to purple or blue
    • Skin Ulceration

    How Support Hose with Gradient Compression Help Prevent DVT

    Gradient compression stockings not only minimize the risk of DVT, but may also be used in treatment to reduce swelling and prevent blood from pooling in leg veins. Gradient compression hose apply the greatest compression at the ankle gradually getting less up the length of the thigh to improve circulation of blood in the legs and increase the flow of blood back to the heart.

     

    Wikipedia describes a thrombus or blood clot as the final product of the process by which blood changes from a liquid to a gel. This is a step in the process to prevent and stop bleeding.

     

    If you experience these symptoms it would be best to seek a physician for advice. If your physician diagnoses deep vein thrombosis this can be effectively treated.

    One of our great customers wrote to us:

    “I ordered compression stocking from you after my DVT a few years ago. I was thrilled with your excellent customer service and pricing. The best part is that you listened to my problems getting the socks off after a hip replacement and offered some tips that were a bit off the wall—but they worked!

    After my DVT, I was inspired to increase awareness of venous blood clots so I helped launch a new national nonprofit called the National Alliance for Thrombosis and Thrombophilia (NATT). Our mission is focused on patient service as well as public and professional education. We’ve done patient seminars across the country and have produced quality treatment materials for providers. Our newsletters, one on post-thrombotic syndrome, are on our website. Here in the Twin Cities, we’re starting a patient support group and a local chapter that we’d like to model for the rest of the nation. I invite you to review our website– and maybe let patients know about us.”

    So here it is:

    The National Alliance for Thrombosis and Thrombophilia (NATT) is a nationwide, community-based, volunteer health organization formed in August 2003. Our goal is to ensure that people suffering from thrombosis and thrombophilia get early diagnosis, optimal treatment, and quality patient and family support. NATT fosters research, education, support, and advocacy on behalf of those at risk of, or affected by, blood clots.

    Some of our specific activities include:

    Conducting patient seminars across the country Creating prevention and treatment brochures Publishing quarterly newsletters targeted to patients and providers Advocating for issues important to those who have experienced, or are at risk of, deep vein thrombosis (DVT) and/or pulmonary embolism (PE) We invite you to review our website and to consider becoming a volunteer with NATT. Thank you!

    The National Alliance for Thrombosis and Thrombophilia

March is DVT Awareness Month

Keep a friend or loved one healthy-tell them about DVT

Age, family history, obesity, immobility, pregnancy, recent surgery or injury to the hips or knees, contraceptive pills, and hormone replacement therapy are some risk factors that make a DVT more likely to occur. Potential complications of a DVT are the possibility of a PE, Pulmonary Embolism. A PE happens when a piece of the blood clot breaks off and travels through the bloodstream and becomes lodged in the lung. This may cause chest pain, shortness of breath and you should seek medical treatment.

If you have associated risk factors, or want to help prevent the risk of developing a blood clot, it is important to wear gradient compression hose during air travel, long car, bus or train rides due to prolonged immobility. Stockings also help to relieve swelling, pain and post thrombotic syndrome. PTS is a late complication of DVT in which signs and symptoms may include pain, edema, hyperpigmentation and skin ulceration. Some additional DVT treatments include anticoagulant medicines and surgery. If you want to help prevent the occurrence of a DVT you should look at your risk factors, exercise your legs, wear loose-fitting clothing, keep hydrated with water and wear graduated compression stockings.

So, what is a DVT and how is it formed? The arteries transport the oxygen rich blood away from the heart. The veins are thin-walled blood vessels that carry oxygen poor blood from the tissues back to the heart. In order to move the blood against gravity the leg muscles squeeze the deep veins to move the blood back to the lungs and heart. The human body has three types of veins; superficial veins which are the veins that are close to the skin (the ones that you can see), deep veins which lie within the muscle structure within the body and perforating veins which connect the deep veins to the superficial veins. The perforating veins contain one-way valves for the return of the blood back to the heart. A deep vein thrombosis (DVT) is caused when a blood clot is formed within the deep veins. This most often occurs near a venous valve. The DVT can permanently damage the vein wall and valve with scarring or fibrosis which can cause them to become incompetent resulting in reflux (backward) flow of blood and venous congestion. A DVT can be dangerous because a fragment can break loose from the deep vein, travel through the vein and lodge in the lungs causing a pulmonary embolism. Consult with your physician to determine if you have risk factors and seek advice on appropriate prophylactic (preventative) measures, including the amount of compression to wear. If you experience these symptoms it would be best to seek a physician for advice. If your physician diagnoses deep vein thrombosis this can be effectively treated.
In summary, here are a few suggestions to combat the possibility of developing a DVT:
• Exercise your legs
• Wear loose fitting clothing
• Drink plenty of water Elevate legs when possible
• Wear gradient compression hosiery
• Stretch and exercise your legs at least once every hour, especially when traveling

Additionally, the signs and symptoms of deep vein thrombosis include:
• Pain in the leg
• Leg tenderness
• Edema
• Increased warmth of the leg
• Redness in the leg (hyperpigmentation)
• Skin Ulceration
If you experience these symptoms it would be best to seek a physician for advice. If your physician diagnoses deep vein thrombosis this can be effectively treated.
______________________________________________
One of our great customers wrote to us:

“I ordered compression stocking from you after my DVT a few years ago. I was thrilled with your excellent customer service and pricing. The best part is that you listened to my problems getting the socks off after a hip replacement and offered some tips that were a bit off the wall-but they worked!

After my DVT, I was inspired to increase awareness of venous blood clots so I helped launch a new national nonprofit called the National Alliance for Thrombosis and Thrombophilia (NATT). Our mission is focused on patient service as well as public and professional education. We’ve done patient seminars across the country and have produced quality treatment materials for providers. Our newsletters, one on post-thrombotic syndrome, are on our website. Here in the Twin Cities, we’re starting a patient support group and a local chapter that we’d like to model for the rest of the nation. I invite you to review our website– and maybe let patients know about us.”

So here it is:

The National Alliance for Thrombosis and Thrombophilia (NATT) is a nationwide, community-based, volunteer health organization formed in August 2003. Our goal is to ensure that people suffering from thrombosis and thrombophilia get early diagnosis, optimal treatment, and quality patient and family support. NATT fosters research, education, support, and advocacy on behalf of those at risk of, or affected by, blood clots.

Some of our specific activities include:

Conducting patient seminars across the country Creating prevention and treatment brochures Publishing quarterly newsletters targeted to patients and providers Advocating for issues important to those who have experienced, or are at risk of, deep vein thrombosis (DVT) and/or pulmonary embolism (PE) We invite you to review our website and to consider becoming a volunteer with NATT. Thank you!