Pulmonary embolism is a condition that can become life-threatening if not addressed in good time. The small blood clots can take long before manifesting any visible symptoms. It is critical for you to know the early signs and symptoms to help make an early diagnosis. Seeking for PE treatment early when symptoms start arising will save your life.
What is Pulmonary Embolism?
Typically, the blood travels from the heart to the lungs through the pulmonary artery. In the lungs, the blood undergoes oxygenation process. After that, the blood flows back to the heart so that the heart can pump it to the rest of the body. Pulmonary embolism arises when there is a blood clot in the artery connecting the heart and the lungs.
The blood clot leads to blockage of the normal flow of the blood. The condition deprives your body the oxygen required for sustaining life. The blood clot affects the functioning of other body organs which is fatal.
The blood clot can originate from anywhere in the body. However, most of the blood clots arise from calf veins. The calf veins can get the blood clot through trauma, some medications, mobility issues or injuries to the leg.
5 Tips for recognizing Pulmonary Embolism Early
The key to recognizing pulmonary embolism on time is knowing the symptoms. The symptoms will help you notice any abnormalities in your normal body functioning.
1. Leg pain
PE may show a combination of symptoms at once, and other times the symptoms may be in the affected region. The most common region that is susceptible to a blood clot is the leg calves. We sometimes tend to confuse the pain with muscle cramp calves. It is good to check with a doctor and find out the actual cause. When you notice sharp pain with a skin discoloration in the leg, you should seek professional medical attention.
2. Watch out for swelling in your Limbs
Swelling is among the common and first signs of pulmonary embolism. It arises due to the blocked circulation of blood. When blood is unable to move in the legs, there is a buildup which leads to swelling. When you see any swelling alongside some pain, seek medical attention.
3. Chest Pains
We most commonly associate chest pain with heart attacks. However, one of the early symptoms of PE is chest pain. The difference comes in when the sharp pain accompanies the chest pains. The condition may further deteriorate as you continue breathing.
Sometimes coughing may occur. You may cough out blood or mucous consistently. Call the doctor right away. The doctor will determine whether you need PE treatment or heart attack treatment.
4. Skin Color Change
The skin color change arises in the affected area where the clot developed. The skin also starts to become warm after the color change. The National Blot Clot Alliance advises checking the arm and the leg for any changes in color and if the skin is becoming warm.
5. Shortness of Breath
When the blood clot blocks the movement of blood, the condition deprives your body oxygen. The National Institute of Health reveals that the body will start increasing the heart rate to compensate for low oxygen. Some people may experience episodes of fainting or passing out.