Pulmonary embolism occurs when a blood clot in the leg breaks loose and travels to the lungs. It increases with age, and so do the rates of mortality associated with the disease. It is a pretty serious condition, that can cause permanent damage to the lungs. Furthermore, it is the third leading cause of death. After myocardial infarction and cerebrovascular disease.
Pulmonary embolism – a disease of old age
According to various research studies, in the elderly, it is still underdiagnosed as well as undertreated. Experts claim that as the risk of it shoots up with age. It becomes necessary to adopt techniques that would help in early detection of the condition, and thus prevent fatalities. In view of this, studies of the lower extremities coupled with regular lung scanning should be of prime importance. to help in the early detection of the condition for your loved ones.
It is a condition, wherein a blood clot gets trapped in the artery of the lungs, crippling the oxygen supply. It is a fatal condition and can cause death within an hour of its onset if prompt action is not taken.
The sequence of events that follow after the clot gets deposited. Largely depend on the size of the thromboembolic (blood clot) and the site it gets attached to. For example, if there is small thromboembolism. It usually attaches itself to the distal areas of the lungs and in most cases remains asymptomatic in nature. Causing only cough or chest pain. However, if there is a big clot. then it gets trapped in the pulmonary artery of the lungs. And can cause hemodynamic compromise, which can eventually lead to death.
Pulmonary embolism is more often a resultant reaction or a complication of deep vein thrombosis. The phenomenon, that causes the blood clot in the leg to break loose and get deposited in the lung artery. Gives rise to pulmonary embolism. However, apart from deep vein thrombosis, there are many other risk factors that can put your loved ones at risk of the disease. Following is a comprehensive list of risk factors for pulmonary embolism:
A family history of either deep vein thrombosis or pulmonary embolism
Living an inactive or sedentary lifestyle
History of stroke or heart attack
Fracture of the hip, leg or pelvis
Surgery in the last 3 months of knee, pelvis, hip or abdomen
`Tweet “Pulmonary embolism is more often a resultant reaction or a complication of deep vein thrombosis.”`
Symptoms of Pulmonary embolism
The diagnosis of pulmonary embolism is very difficult. Especially in those loved ones, who are suffering from heart disease or lung disorder. Furthermore, it becomes important to have proper knowledge about the signs and symptoms of a pulmonary embolism. Timely recognition of the symptoms will enable prompt action and can help in saving many lives.
The signs and symptoms of pulmonary embolism would largely depend on the size of the clot. And the extent of damage to the affected lungs. Moreover, the nature of the symptoms would also be due to the presence of heart diseases. The following is a comprehensive list of symptoms of pulmonary embolism:
Shortness of breath:
This is a classical symptom of pulmonary embolism. When there is a clot in the lungs, shortness of breath or difficulty in breathing is usually the first sign. Shortness of breath worsens with exertion or physical activity.
This is usually productive in nature, and the sputum may contain blood in it.
The chest pain would be so severe and would not go away with rest. The pain shall worsen upon any form of physical activity or while coughing.
In addition to the above common symptoms
Bluish tinge in the skin, as the oxygen supply to the lungs, gets diminished
Pain in the legs, especially in the calf muscles
Anxiety and restlessness
Preventing pulmonary embolism
Even though anticoagulant medications, do their job fairly well. But still, there are good chances of a recurrence of one. Therefore, it is advisable to adopt certain lifestyle changes. that can help in preventing further attacks of one. Here are certain strategies that can help in preventing pulmonary embolism:
[Tweet “Here are certain strategies that can help in preventing pulmonary embolism.”]
Age and exercise
With advancing, age and immobility are the biggest risk factors for pulmonary embolism. With age, our loved ones tend to become immobile either due to disease conditions. Or for the will of living a sedentary lifestyle. All these simply increase the chances of developing pulmonary embolism. Therefore, medical experts always recommend everyone to exercise and to not sit for more than 30 minutes at a stretch. If your loved ones find it difficult to go for walks, then you can always make them move their legs while they are sitting. This can also significantly reduce the chances of developing blood clots in the legs. Thereby preventing the incidence of pulmonary embolism. Ask your elderly to pump their feet up and down, with their toes pointing towards the knee and down. This is a very good exercise and we need to encourage our elderly to practice it daily.
This is another important factor that can increase the chances of having one. If your elderly has the habit of smoking, it is essential that you help them quit it.
Following the above tips and suggestions can help. It can be difficult to attend to your loved one with the thought of a pulmonary embolism, but it’s not impossible. With the right knowledge, you can do this. Don’t forget about taking care of yourself and keeping your business going while you are caregiving. I’m here to assist you on this journey, schedule your planning session with me so we can look at how to keep your life and your business running smoothly. Also, check out this article on breathing.
Downsizing For Your Move Downsizing can be hard. To downsize an entire house takes time, but I can help you. When you’re conducting a house move, it’s not all the time that you’re going to move from your old home to a new house of exactly the same size. Sometimes, other cities or states have…
[fancy_box id=1 linked_cu=6541 align=”center”]CLICK HERE TO GET UPIR FREE TIP SHEET[/fancy_box] Importance of care Skincare becomes extremely important as we age. Changes in its structure cause it to undergo thinning, which gives ways for various problems to sneak in. This is a cause of great worry for your loved ones. It tends to break open…
Caregiving Experts on Covid-19 Caregiving Experts and Caregivers are in unprecedented times with a disease that has no cure and unfortunately, we are in a new normal with this. They can be overwhelming enough without Covid-19, but not impossible. Here are some of the top Caregiving Experts to help you now! Caregiving Expert – Tena…
Aging and dry skin Aging takes a toll on the skin, with it being more prone to dryness and thinning. As our seniors begin to age, their skin becomes dry and begin to itch more often. There are reports that 75% of our seniors face the problem of dry and itchy skin. Many factors are…
[fancy_box id=1 linked_cu=6993 align=”center”] CLICK HERE TO GET YOUR FREE TIP SHEET[/fancy_box] What is a Hip fracture A hip fracture is a pretty common occurrence in seniors. Osteoporosis is a common ailment during old age. Which makes senior women more prone to falls and fractures. A hip fracture can cause life-threatening complications. People over age…
What is Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis Amyotrophic Lateral sclerosis (ALS), is a neuromuscular disease. It begins as a muscular weakness, but gradually causes paralysis of the entire body. The condition is also often referred to as motor neuron or Lou Gehrig’s Disease. The condition is more common amongst the male population. Understanding the basis of (ALS)…