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How does age affect risk for pulmonary embolism?

Diana Meeks
Diana Meeks on behalf of Sigma Nursing
Family Practitioner

Age is a major risk factor for pulmonary embolism. Your risk for pulmonary embolism doubles every decade you live past the age of 60. Older people have a higher risk of developing clots than those who are younger because

  • the valves in their veins which help circulation don't work as well
  • they are more likely to have cancer, heart disease, or joint replacement surgery
  • they are more likely to be less active or immobile 

If you are over the age of 60, you may want to talk to your doctor about reducing your risk for pulmonary embolism.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.