The primary goal of your self-care plan should be preventing deep vein thrombosis from occurring.
To prevent deep vein thrombosis from worsening or happening again:
Jan. 19, 2013
- Check in with your doctor regularly to see if your medication or treatments need to be modified.
- Watch how much vitamin K you're eating if you take blood thinners. Vitamin K can affect how drugs such as warfarin work. Foods high in vitamin K include green leafy vegetables and canola and soybean oils.
- Exercise your lower calf muscles if you'll be sitting a long time. Whenever possible, get up and walk around. If you can't get up to walk around, try raising and lowering your heels while keeping your toes on the floor, then raising your toes while your heels are on the floor.
- Move. If you've been on bed rest, because of surgery or other factors, the sooner you get moving, the less likely blood clots will develop.
- Make lifestyle changes. Lose weight, quit smoking and control your blood pressure. Obesity, smoking and high blood pressure all increase your risk of deep vein thrombosis.
- Wear compression stockings to help prevent blood clots in the legs if your doctor recommends them.
- Be on the lookout for excessive bleeding, which can be a side effect of taking medications such as blood thinners. Talk to your doctor about activities that could cause you to bruise or get cut, as even a minor injury could become serious if you're taking blood thinners.
- Deep vein thrombosis. National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute. http://www.nhlbi.nih.gov/health/dci/Diseases/Dvt/DVT_All.html. Accessed May 29, 2011.
- Goldhaber SZ. Deep venous thrombosis and pulmonary embolism. In: Fauci AS, et al. Harrison's Online. 17th ed. New York, N.Y.: The McGraw-Hill Companies. 2008. http://www.accessmedicine.com/content.aspx?aID=2880540&searchStr=deep+vein+thrombosis#2880540. Accessed May 28, 2011.
- Deep vein thrombosis (DVT). Society for Vascular Surgery. https://www.vascularweb.org/vascularhealth/Pages/deep-vein-thrombosis-(-dvt-)-.aspx?PF=1. Accessed May 28, 2011.
- Focus on blood clots. Vascular Disease Foundation. http://www.vdf.org/pdfs/VDF_FocusOnBloodClots.pdf. Accessed May 29, 2011.
- O'Connor MB, et al. Inflammatory bowel disease, such as ulcerative colitis, is a risk factor for recurrent thromboembolic events: A case report. Cases Journal. 2009;2:173.
- Being tall, obese may significantly increase risk of blood clots in deep veins. American Heart Association. http://www.newsroom.heart.org/index.php?s=43&item=1321. Accessed May 29, 2011.
- Alguire PC, et al. Post-thrombotic (postphlebitic) syndrome. http://www.uptodate.com/home/index.html. Accessed May 27, 2011.
- Lip GY, et al. Treatment of lower extremity deep vein thrombosis. http://www.uptodate.com/home/index.html. Accessed May 27, 2011.
- FDA expands use of Xarelto to treat, reduce recurrence of blood clots. U.S. Food and Drug Administration. http://www.fda.gov/NewsEvents/Newsroom/PressAnnouncements/ucm326654.htm?source=govdelivery. Accessed Jan. 2, 2013.