Q

Blood Clot (Thrombus)

What is the best way to prevent deep vein thrombosis (DVT)?

A Answers (2)

  • A Vascular Surgery, answered on behalf of
    The best way to prevent deep vein thrombosis (DVT) is to understand your risk and take precautions when traveling. DVT risk factors specifically related to flying include dehydration -- which can contribute to clotting -- and immobility. Be sure to drink plenty of water and avoid alcohol when flying. Try to get up and walk around the cabin at least once an hour. (The same goes for trips by train, bus or car.)

    Do exercises while seated to boost circulation. Try foot circles, foot lifts -- heels on the floor and toes stretched high then toes on the floor and heels stretched high -- shoulder rolls, knee lifts and stretches.

    If you’re concerned about DVT, talk to your doctor before traveling. He or she will help you identify any potential issues and may recommend blood thinning medications or compression stockings depending on your travel plans.

    DVT can occur during a trip or after you reach your destination, so be on the lookout for symptoms. If you think you have DVT, don’t just ignore the symptoms. Contact your doctor immediately. It could save your life.

    DISCLAIMER: Trinity Health recognizes that people seek medical information on a variety of topics for a variety of reasons. Trinity Health does not condone or support all practices covered in this site. As a Catholic health care organization, Trinity Health acts in accordance with the Catholic tradition.

    Please note, the information contained on this website is provided to supplement the care provided by your physician. It is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice. Always seek the advice of a qualified health care provider if you have questions regarding your medical condition or before starting any new treatment. In the event of a medical emergency always call 911 or proceed to your nearest emergency care facility.
  • There are several good ways to prevent deep vein thrombosis (DVT), but the simplest is to exercise your calves. If you are sitting for long periods during the day, make sure to get up and walk around every half hour. If you are unable to get up, stretch and flex your calf muscles while you are sitting. Those who are hospitalized or on bed rest at home should also work their arm, leg, and neck muscles periodically (or have a nurse or family member do it for you) to prevent blood from pooling in veins.

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.
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Who is most at risk for deep vein thrombosis (DVT)?