What is it?

A thrombus is a blood clot that forms in a vein, while an embolus is anything that moves through the blood vessels. When the embulos reaches a small blood vessel it gets stucked. This results in cessation of blood flow. An embolus is often a small piece of a blood clot that breaks off (thromboembolus). It may also be fat, air, amniotic fluid, a tumour, or a foreign substance such as talc, iodine, cotton, or a tiny piece of catheter tube. Venous thromboembolism is a disorder that includes both ep vein thrombosis (DVT) and pulmonary embolism (PE). DVT occurs when a blood clot forms a deep vein, typically in the lower leg, thigh or pelvis. PE is when a clot breaks and travels to the lung by the bloodstream. Risk factors for VTE include malignancies, heart attack, heart failure, and after surgery or injury.

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Additional names

This group contains additional names:
- Acute Venous Embolism and Thrombosis of Axillary Veins
- Acute deep venous thrombosis of axillary vein
- DVT axillary vein
- Thrombophlebitis Migrans
- Renal Vein Thrombosis and Embolism
- Thrombosis of kidney vein
- Acute Venous Embolism and Thrombosis of Veins
- Acute Venous Embolism and Thrombosis of Internal Jugular Veins
- Venous Embolism and Thrombosis of Inferior Vena Cava
- Acute Venous Embolism and Thrombosis of Subclavian Veins

Signs & symptoms

Signs and symptoms of DVT may include swelling, redness and pain but sometimes patients do not have symptoms at all. PE symptoms include sudden chest pain and shortness of breath.


Diagnosis of DVT may include duplex ultrasonography, D-dimer blood test (which can only exclude if negative), contrast venography and an MRI. PE is diagnosed by computed tomographic pulmonary angiography (CTPA), ventilation-perfusion (V/Q) scan , pulmonary angiography and MRI.


Treatment of DVT or PE usually includes anticoagulants, thrombolytics, inferior vena cava filters when anticoagulants cannot be used or do not work wellenoguh. In rare cases, a thrombectomy to remove the clot may be necessary.

☝️ This is not a substitute for professional medical advice. Please consult with your physician before making any medical decision.

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