Pandemic has seen many changes, mainly being with the traditional working style, we have seen homework commonly called as Work from Home, being the new norm. Obesity is one of the common side effect of this new working style. Another being a sedentary lifestyle and lack of exercise. A long period of immobility can cause venous blood to pool in the legs, leading to venous problems, one of them being DVT. The best method of preventing it is by taking a short walk at intervals and leg exercise.
Here’s all you need to know about managing Deep Vein Thrombosis or DVT during pandemic from Dr Amish Mhatre – Vascular Surgeon – Fortis Hospital, Mumbai
1) Is there a connection between DVT and COVID?
COVID infection had lots of challenges during the initial days of the diseases, the cause and effect were not known in those days. But as the knowledge as to the spread, prevention, and treatment of COVID improved, we realized the one of the most common effect of the disease was thrombosis or clots in the blood vessels, both arteries and venous system. COVID infection caused hypercoagulable state or high blood clot formation incidence.
2) How can we manage DVT in COVID patients?
DVT is managed like any standard treatment recommended for treating DVT in non-COVID patients. We start with injectables anticoagulants - LMWH (Low Molecular Weight Heparin), which is a blood thing medication, and later shift the patient on oral medications. It’s a long duration treatment, some may need for more than six months.
3) Why DVT happen & who all are prone to this disease?
As far as COVID infection is concern, all patients are at a risk of DVT. Others, as mentioned earlier, are those people who have a sedentary lifestyle and lack of exercise. Prolong immobility is a major risk factor.
4) What are the treatment options available for DVT?
Once there is a diagnosis of DVT, the only treatment is:
- Anticoagulation - blood-thinning medications
- Supportive medication like painkillers, sometimes antibiotics, and later graded compression stockings.
- In a COVID related thrombosis, endovascular or mechanical removal of thrombus is to be avoided unless there is a risk of limb loss.
5) How DVT puts you at a risk of stroke
Unprovoked or unknown cause for DVT is usually because of some coagulation abnormalities of blood, these patients are at risk of clot formation or thrombosis is any blood vessels in the body.
6) What type of exercise & Food is good to prevent DVT?
Listed below are some care tips in case of diet and food habits:
- All form of exercise is allowed
- If a person does not have an active lifestyle, walking and ankle exercise to prevent DVT is a must.
- Avoid prolonging standing and sitting in one place.
- One can have her or his regular diet, no advantage or disadvantage over a particular food habit.
- Avoid the causative factors for DVT. These mainly being a sedentary lifestyle, obesity, smoking, travel
- Dynamic compression stockings also help.
With inputs from Dr Amish Mhatre – Vascular Surgeon – Fortis Hospital, Mumbai
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