Pulmonary Embolism

What is pulmonary embolism?

The artery that carried blood to the lungs from the heart is called the ‘pulmonary artery’. A blood clot or blockage in this pulmonary artery is called pulmonary embolism. It has the potential to stop blood from reaching the blood and this can be life threatening.

What are the signs and symptoms of pulmonary embolism?

The symptoms of pulmonary embolism will be different in each individual. So, it will be difficult to recognise pulmonary embolism in certain people. Some of the major symptoms may include:

  • A dry cough which may sometimes be seen with bloody mucus

  • A sharp and stabbing chest pain

  • Breathing difficulties

  • Dizziness or fainting

What are the causes of pulmonary embolism?

A blood clot that travels from one of the deep veins in the legs to the lungs and heart is the major cause of pulmonary embolism. Deep vein thrombosis is the blood clot seen in one of the deep veins of the legs. It may occur without any vital reason. In most cases, it occurs after a longs period of inactivity. DVT may occur due to various other reasons like:

  • Certain medical conditions

  • Damage to the wall of a blood vessel

  • During pregnancy

What are the treatment options for pulmonary embolism?

Anticoagulant medicines are the main treatment option for pulmonary embolism. The medication stops further development of the blood clot and reduces the risks for future clots. Regular anticoagulant injections and tablets for several months will cure the condition. The doctor may suggest regular blood tests during the treatment period to check the progress.