Could You Have a Blood Clot?

One of my running friends said it best, “It would be nice to know how to tell the difference between muscle pain and the type of pain you felt. Or maybe the really scary thing was that you couldn’t tell?” I’ve been thinking a lot about that. And yes, one of the really scary things was that I honestly had no idea the pain I was feeling in my calf and lung was anything to be that concerned about until it was almost too late. That pain being an acute blood clot known as deep vein thrombosis (DVT) and a pulmonary embolism (PE), which developed as a result of a complete autoimmune meltdown. Why you ask? Because my immune system mistakenly produces antibodies against certain normal proteins in my blood, also known as antiphospholipid syndrome. Blood clots are a serious and frequent medical condition that can be deadly and effect anyone. Mine felt very similar to a running injury. Could you have a blood clot?

The truth of the matter is we as human beings often ignore or disregard pain we are feeling as “no big deal.” I know, I’ve struggled with Patellofemoral Syndrome (a.k.a Runner’s Knee and yes, everything really is a syndrome nowadays) all but the first year I ran. Knee pain for me? Completely normal, something I’ve had to live with if I want to run. It hurts worse at times, feels better other times and with no apparent rhyme or reason can totally make or break my run. And, I’m not alone. Most runners I know and run with seem to struggle with some sort of ongoing pain, injury or bodily malfunction.

Looking back, now should I have known something was gravely wrong? Yes, but I blamed in on my ongoing knee problems.

This pain was different.

First, there was the leg pain. I had been complaining about leg pain for a couple of weeks or so. I distinctly remember not only did my knee hurt, but my calf hurt too. The pain extended down into my ankle and to the bottom of my foot. The thing that was different is this pain was not as a result of running. I had it even when I didn’t run. In fact, when I ran, I noticed it less.

I have always had a discolored left leg. It is brownish and almost looks like dark freckling or like I stepped in mud that splattered. At times, it was almost purplish and I had it a biopsy done on it years ago by a dermatologist who determined it was harmless pigmentation. The other thing that makes my situation complicated is that I have had more than one doctor look at my leg for the purplish discoloration. It had been discolored ever since college, from what I can remember. I even had a biopsy on the skin about two years ago in which a dermatologist determined it was a pigmentation issue and not cancerous or anything to worry about. Even my gynecologist was fascinated by the color of my skin and listened to my blood flow. No one ever heard a disruption of blood flow therefore no one assumed it was a clot. I didn’t have varicose veins, either, further indicating a blood clot was was not a probable cause.

 DVT Causes:

  • Slow blood flow (often due to lying or sitting still for an extended period of time – such as in the case of a long plane ride or car ride)
  • Pooling of blood in the vain often due to immobility, medical conditions, or damage to valves in a vein or pressure on the valves, such as during pregnancy
  • Injury to a blood vessel
  • Clotting problems due to aging or a disease
  • Catheters placed in a vein

Symptoms of Deep-Vein Thrombosis (DVT):

  • Swelling in one or both legs (Note, DVT can also occur in the arm veins)
  • Pain or tenderness in one or both legs, which may occur only while standing or walking
  • Warmth in the skin of the affected leg
  • Red or discolored skin in the affected leg
  • Visible surface veins
  • Leg fatigue

DVT can partly or completely block blood flow, causing chronic pain and swelling. It may damage valves in blood vessels, making it difficult to get around.

Half of all DVT cases cause no symptoms.

DVT symptoms

My Symptoms:

  • Swelling in one or both legs
  • Pain or tenderness in one or both legs, which may occur only while standing or walking
  • Warmth in the skin of the affected leg
  • Red or discolored skin in the affected leg
  • Visible surface veins
  • Leg fatigue

What I Felt:

It started off feeling exactly like a pulled muscle of charlie horse in my calf. Then, in a matter of one day, it turned to excruciating pain that extended from the back of my knee down to my ankle whenever I put any amount of weight on it. I was nearly dragging my leg by the time my husband and I went to the hospital and it was almost too late by the time the pain got that bad (which didn’t take very long). I have said it previously and I will say it again because it is the only way I can describe it: It felt like someone had the soft, fleshy skin behind my knee in a vice and just kept on tightening. Runner’s Knee caused me to hobble, caused me to scoot down stairs, sidestep curbs and grimace when getting in and out of the car. Runner’s Knee never caused pain in the back of my leg. Also, the side of my calf was tender to the touch, but not overly warm, now I know that soreness was primary along the femoral vein. I did not notice any swelling, especially in my lower leg. My knee is always slightly swollen to being with.

I just wonder how long this clot had been building. It is terrifying to think about.

Then there was the side pain. I texted a friend the weekend I was admitted to the hospital who asked how my knee was, “Sore but okay. The weird thing is my left side. Hurts when I breathe like I can’t catch my breath. Slept propped up. No idea what the hell happened. Started mid-day yesterday.”

(LOOKING BACK, THIS IS NOT NORMAL!)

Symptoms of a Pulmonary Embolism:

  • Shortness of breath that may occur suddenly
  • Sudden, sharp chest pain that may become worse with deep breathing or coughing
  • Rapid heart rate
  • Rapid breathing
  • Sweating
  • Anxiety
  • Coughing up blood or pink, foamy mucus
  • Fainting, lightheadedness or dizziness
  • Heart palpitations
  • Signs of shock

Pulmonary embolism may be hard to diagnose because its symptoms may occur with or are similar to other conditions, such as a heart attack, a panic attack, or even pneumonia.

Also, some people with pulmonary embolism do not have symptoms.

PE symptoms

My Symptoms:

  • Shortness of breath that may occur suddenly
  • Sudden, sharp chest pain that may become worse with deep breathing or coughing
  • Rapid heart rate
  • Rapid breathing
  • Sweating
  • Anxiety
  • Coughing up blood or pink, foamy mucus
  • Fainting, lightheadedness or dizziness
  • Heart palpitations
  • Signs of shock

What I Felt:

I honestly thought this was a really bad side stitch at first. Then, it got worse over time. A pretty good indicator that it was not a side stitch was that it did not happen while I was running. It happened much later in the day once my body had a chance to relax. As time went on, the pain became nearly unbearable and not only that, it became hard to breath. I could not lie down at all – the pain was excruciating. I never really felt chest pains, but I did feel like someone was jamming their thumb into my rib cage. My breathing became shallow and I could only say two or three words at a time. The best indicator? I could not draw in a deep breath – very similar to when you are trying to catch your breath during a hard or hot run, but it doesn’t go away with rest or pain meds. One of my doctors told me, there should have been a moment in time when I realized I couldn’t breathe (when the clot entered my lung and obstructed air flow); however, I think this happened when I was taking my nap and I didn’t know the event had occurred. If I had been up, walking around or running errands, I may have noticed it as it happened and thought differently about it. 

The pain in my leg/knee/calf combined with the new pain in my side should have been an indicator that something was wrong and I needed immediate medical attention because a PE is most commonly caused by a blood clot that breaks off from a leg or pelvis vein and travels to the lung, creating a big problem.

I should have put the two pains together.

So there you have it. If you at all think you are suffering from a blood clot in your leg or lung, please do not wait to get emergency medical attention. Most people who are going to die from a PE do so within 30 to 60 minutes of the event, which is why I am so lucky (since I took well over 24 hours to go to the hospital).

People will probably always have to deal with physical pain, but we need to pay closer attention to our bodies. If something doesn’t seem right, doesn’t feel right or you are even slightly concerned, please seek medical attention to determine, could you have a blood clot? The answer is yes and taking action just might save your life as it did mine.

Comments

  1. Hi

    Thank you for writing this, I have this irrational fear that every leg ache/cramp is DVT and I go into panic mode. Reading this and seeing that when you had yours, the pain was really noticeable that I can hopefully stop panicking and just get on with it.

    Not sure where it all started, but I’ve always been a bit of a hypochondriac, and I think I saw a tv show where an actor died of a DVT, then there were the deaths from passenagers a few years back that brought it all into the media, and now, if saw I’m in front of the TV or Playstation for a couple of hours, and then I get a leg ache, thats it I’m panicking again, popping asprin hoping its anti-coagulating proprieties will somehow save my life, sad eh! Perhaps I should get some help/advice about it from a professional…

    Anyway, thanks again for this, it was a very inciting read and I hope you don’t get anymore.

    All the best

    Sam

    • I am only one leg now have been since august due to surgery on the right foot. I havnt walked on it in a long time I also have osteomyelitis. My right calf on me only good leg today has been feeling like u have been to the gym and ran a good few kms. I know when ur on crutches it can push the leg a but but this feels different if I squeeze the back of the calf it’s tender too and hurts loads is this something to b worried about the hozzie said dvts can happen in ur good leg too cos ur putting more pressure on it. It’s not the hopping I am immune to thatnow but the leg feels very painful it’s fat too

  2. I have to scream and fall down on the floor when I have an episode within my right inner leg below the knee. The vein swells up and the pain is excruciating. Every few months it hits again. If I am moving the leg the wrong way to fast , it hits.

    • Sara- Words to Run By Blog says:

      Oh no, David! That does not sound normal or good. Can you seek medical attention next time this occurs? I would be concerned about a potential DVT because of the swelling and pain. If it continues, I would seek medical attention to be sure. Take care.

  3. Good morning –
    Hi , wow after read your “blog” I feel like I could have wrote this. The reason I am even reading this is because this morning @ 2:00 am I awoke with a pinch up my forearm. I googled ” I have a pinch under my skin, could this be a blood clot ? I don’t know why I’m even acting surprised. I was diagnosed with APS “Hugh’s Syndrome” I’ve had PE in the Lung, clots in legs, I had a bypass done on my discovered leg last summer , after much pain and discoloration. Clot in the brain, which led to a stroke, 2 heart attacks, all clot related. These are just the beginning . I was also diagnosed with lupus. not always being positive for lupus there had to be more. My platelets are what seem to stick together. I watch my PT\INR WEEKLY. I have my own machine. The reson for the post, I don’t run, yet I’ve had all of these and more. But, having Epiphanies as I’m reading your writing, starting to make clear I am not alone in this world. Scared to death, hard enough in the single world having lupus,HUGHes, can’t get quite lonely. I had a website ” mengetlupustoo.com” I gave that up on the account I was getting so depressed listening to the guys, talk about there health issues. As much as it was nice to relate, but always turned negative. don’t really believe it was on purpose. It was nice to read your article that was enlightening as well as informative. I appreciate this, more than you would probably understand. Look like I need to contact my dr to see what the next step should be with my arm. Thanks again

    • Sara- Words to Run By Blog says:

      Hello David. Thank you so much for stopping by, it is really great to connect with you. I also have APS and was diagnosed in 2012. You are not alone. Have you had a chance to visit my recovery site? It is http://BloodClotRecovery.net. I would very much welcome you there. It is for people like us who have survived, or loss, and are looking for connection and support in an otherwise very confusing, overwhelming and frightening time. I hope you were able to contact your doctor and have answers. I do understand how important it is to relate to someone – it is why I started talking about what happened to me. I was very alone.

      Thinking of you and I am so glad you found my article! Keep in touch.

    • David, the APS Foundation of America (www.apsfa.org) discontinuing use of “instant INR” machines as they are historically unreliable for APS. Please check with your doctor, and discuss if direct vein pulls are not a better way to go.

      Also, please check http://www.apsfa.org. It is the lrgest non-profit health site for those that have autoimmune disorders.

      As for me personally, I have Lupus, Secondary APS, Chronic Venous Insufficency, High Blood Pressure due to the CVI and finally Diabetes. I just turned 47. My first DVT and PE was when I was 24. I managed to work consistently over the years despite the occasional DVT, but I had my six DVT last October and that was the game changer. My veins were badly damaged (CVI), and now I have to use lyphadema pump at least three times per day on that leg to push the blood back to my heart and lungs for re-oxygenation. this forced me into retirement just after my 46th birthday. The goal right now is to battle any ulcers that show up so I can keep my leg. Personally, given the 330 pills I take every month and the custom compression stockings I wear, I just assume they take the leg. It won’t cure my Lupus or APS, but it will rid me of where most of my pain and HBP spring from…not to mention I could cut my medication in half at least and several doctors appointments, too! My husband and mom are nit terribly thrilled with that idea so I will have to work on them a bit longer.

      At any rate, I hope you feel better. If you do not have a team who work with (vascular, hematology, neurology, swim buddy…wait, did I just saw swim buddy? Yes, I did. I used to run three miles per day but that came to a screeching halt last October. Now, I swim. It takes a tremendous amount of weight, pressure and pain off my bad leg. As for the diabetes, you know to check you glucose four times per day, always take you insulin at the same time every day which means meal times must be structured, and eat in moderation. And of course, the quickest way to lower you glucose is drinking water and walking. Diabetes can complicate APS so you must have that under control.

      I sincerely hope the issue with your arm was resolved. NEXT time you are concerned you may have a clot, do NOT wait. Secondly, do NOT drive. Have a family member or friend drive to the doc or ER. Remember, once you have a DVT, you will always be at a higher risk for another. And given that you are APS positive, the risk is even higher. It is nirmal to be scared, and sometimes it can be impossible to tell the difference between a cramp and a DVT. But better to put the doc or ER through their paces and you be wrong, than to wait it out hoping things will change and leave your post on earth too soon. I still worry when that very specific toothache pain hits my calf. From that first moment, I measurement my calf in three places, document it, makes of warmth or pain to touch, and I do this every six hours so the doctor has data to atart running with. TPA cannot be used on me because I take such larges doses of Coumadin so I have learned to read my body’s signals. You can do that, too.

      God’s blessings to you sweet man. You CAN do this. I have been doing it for 23 years, and I am not a strong woman. Check out apsfa.org, and see how much support and education they have to offer.

      Sincerely, Karenina

  4. Hi Sara, Thanks for a very well written blog! After reading, I now am seriously thinking of going to the ER. About two weeks ago, my left calf and foot started to feel a constant ache with shooting pains here and there. I can walk on it, but am favoring it by putting my weight on my other leg most of the time. I went to my Chiropractor thinking it was my plantar fasciitis acting up and she was concerned about a blood clot since my foot felt warm to the touch and she noticed a bulging vein running from my ankle to my lower calf. I went to my primary and after checking my leg out assured me it wasn’t a blood clot, but didn’t run any tests like an ultrasound, just did a physical exam. He also tends to attribute things to my age (55) and weight (190lbs/5’2).The pain is different from when I had my plantar F, and it feels like a vice squeezing my calf with the pain in my foot all over instead of just my inside heel and arch. Since I don’t have any swelling or paleness, my thought was that I just have a really tight IT band which my Chiro says is very tight. After reading your blog though, I’m now concerned enough go to the ER and have them run a sonogram. I’m walking over 10K steps a day (new dog), so not sedentary and haven’t flown recently. Anyway, thank you for writing this.

  5. I had a blood clot in r left leg in 2007. They removed part of my vein. Y can’t remember exactly what they did. I recently relapsed. I have been shooting up right over my upper tbigh where they took out a part of my vein. Each time that I do that, my feet and calf sweels. At times it’s painful. Do you think that I may have another t Nd that it’s very dangerous to shoot up at that spot.

  6. Hi,
    I don’t know if I truly had a blood clot to the lung or not; went to the ER a few days ago, they took a cat scan, blood work, etc. I was flabbergasted when they returned and said they were doing another scan asap because my dDimer blood work revealed an inflammatory marker for the blood clot. After the 2nd scan they came back and said it was a false positive. I asked whya nd they said other conditions canc ause that and to ask my primary care which I did. She really didn’t tell em anything I could understand, bummer! when you speak of knee pain I don’t understand. You see I had my knee replaced two years ago and that knee still has some pain in it. Wondering if there is a connection to the knee replacement and a possible blood clot?

    • Sara- Words to Run By Blog says:

      Hi Tonya. Thank you so much for sharing your story. I apologize for my delayed response, greatly. I was not receiving automatic comment updates for this site.

      Knee replacement therapies are a very high risk factor for blood clots, yes. If you are experiencing any symptoms, please see your doctor, especially if you had an elevated D-Dimer.

      Risk factors – http://bloodclotrecovery.net/blood-clot-basics/dvt-risk-factors/

      Symptoms – http://bloodclotrecovery.net/signs-and-symptoms-of-a-pe-or-dvt/

      I had knee pain because my DVT (blood clot in my leg) originated behind my left knee. It is a common place for blood clots. It hurt because they blood flow was being constricted and there was damage being done.

      Please continue to be in contact with your doctors. I hope this note finds you well.

  7. Hi Sara, Thanks for this post. I, too, am one of the lucky ones. In short a large Pulmonary Embolism that lodged in my right pulmonary artery. Breathlessness was the only thing, though my pulse was up. The breathlessness eased so I went to bed! Overnight I went to the bathroom a couple of times and noticed I was breathless on walking so went to A&M clinic the next morning – about 12hrs after the major breathlessness. I was one of those who had no other criteria, i.e no pain at all anywhere, no other reason for it – though obviously there was a clot somewhere. Complicated by a very low iron count too.

    This was about 4 1/2 weeks ago so I’m still in recovery and will take a look at your other site. I was actually googling immunity as I’ve come down with a boomer viral bug which has me in bed the last two days.

    Thanks for your post. It was informative and I really enjoyed reading it.
    Alison recently posted..Self-seeded PumpkinsMy Profile

    • Sara- Words to Run By Blog says:

      Hi Alison. I apologize greatly for my delay in responding to you. Thanks for your patience as I was not receiving updates for this site, unfortunately. I hope you are feeling better now that some time has gone by and not too ill with other fall/winter bugs that are making the rounds. I have been down for about three weeks with some kind of cold so I know how you feel. Your blog looks lovely, I might add. I will check it out! Take care and keep in touch.

  8. OK so I’m reading this and I want to make sure before I go to the e .r , I’ve noticed two weeks ago my calves started hurting so bad that I couldn’t walk , they felt like I was having Charlie horse pain , well now my legs hurt me between my knee and my calf were hurting that i used a heating pad too calm the pain, and I started noticing that am feeling tightness around my chest area especially when I have anything around it and it gets hard to breath could this be the same as you had. I really would like your feeds back thank you.

  9. I hope this makes it to the Comment page or post.
    SEVERE P A I N LEFT ANKLE IN A VICE FOR HOURS !!! Couldn’t walk move sleep it was Crazy the Breathlessness I was expeirencing was DUE TO PAIN !!!! UN BELIEVABLE PRESSURE LIKE CRUSHING THE BONE ABOVE MY ANKLES AND UNDER MY KNEE !!
    PRIOR TO ANY PAIN I had Swollen Ankles so bad that the Skin Stretched out like a Stretch Armstrong Doll !! My Skins Elasticity came back After Holding it up for hours over my head in a Horizontal Position ! All better so I thought then while moving to the kitchen it JUMPED ON ME IN 3 STEPS AND I WAS GRABBING FOR ANYTHING TO HOLD ON TO !! I took IBU
    but that’s a ANTI INFLAMMATORY NOT A MUSCLE RELAXER !! I had forgotten Im battling a Skeletal issue. So AFTER 10 HOURS OF FIGHTING I CHEWED NOT SWALLOWED I C H E W E D A 10 MG FLEXURAL TAB & Waited for everything to come back into focus !!! ALL PAIN G O N E WITHIN 30 MINUTES ALL SWELLING AND REDNESS G O N E !! I was Excellent 18 hrs ago and the it jumped me. Dehydration cause I was conceded about leg swelling so I drank nothing but a bottle of water in a 24 hr period. Muscle Relaxer brought me back from Anxiety, FEAR, and SEVERE PAIN ! Sometimes we work ourselves up with thoughts that can make us forget that if we can calm the Skeletal muscles it just might capture our good sense. NOW THAT THE PAIN HAD STOPPED I COULD BREATH EVEN DEEPER. This Allowed me to see I’m back. Shortness of Breath would still continue even on a Muscle Relaxer and PAIN !! I feel that when you’ve exhausted everything and you are still in PAIN get to the nearest E. R.

    • Sara- Words to Run By Blog says:

      Thank you so much for sharing your story. I am so sorry you have dealt with this pain as I know exactly how it feels. You are right, if someone is in this pain with combined anxiety and breathlessness (all signs of a blood clot in the lung), they need to seek Emergency medical assistance without delay. Thank you again for sharing.

  10. Gill Harper says:

    I have just come across your blog as I am a tad worried.. About seven months ago I was taken into hospital with severe pain and breathlessness and was diagnosed with two clots in my right lung, I was put on warfarin for six months with regular blood tests, ending with everything being okay and off the warfarin. However, recently I have noticed an ache in my left leg, with the vein prominent running all up my leg to my thigh.. Should I be concerned and see my doctor?
    Many Thanks in advance..

    • Gill Harper says:

      Thankyou so much for your quick reply.. I was unsure as when I had the two p e’s it didn’t start in my leg, but started with a week of breathlessness then severe pain, which is what prompted the emergency admission to hospital. I will indeed make an appointment with my doctor.
      Thanking You Again.

      • Sara- Words to Run By Blog says:

        You’re very welcome and I hope this note finds you well and without incident.

        • I had a blood clot it was from my ankle right up to my thigh I never felt pain just aches ,well when I got to the hospital they said it wasn’t a blood clot but one doctor decided I’d need a scan then they found it ;if that doctor had not insisted I stay for checks I would be dead now

        • what should i do ive got severe pain in my ankle it feeles like when i raise my toes i get pain in the outside of my calf around my knee and i cannot lie on my leg it hurts when i walk under my heel and archway are also sore what would you do

  11. Hi, I could really use some opinions. I had a baby about three months ago. I am absolutely terrified of blood clots. I’ve had an echocardiogram, ekg’s and a chest X-ray. I had to go back to the hospital for toxemia and was later diagnosed with anxiety. I get random pains in my legs, arms, chest, everywhere pretty much. My obgyn kind of just told me I’m paranoid and sent me on my way. Every now and then it’s hard/painful to breathe, but I’ll add that I’m also a smoker. I get horrible headaches. Pretty much, any time something hurts or doesn’t feel right, I automatically think I have a blood clot. This has been going on for months. Could it be a blood clot? Or would something extremely major would have happened by now if I did have one? I feel like I’m going crazy. Can anybody please shed some light on my situation?

    • Sara- Words to Run By Blog says:

      Hi Jess,

      Thanks so much for writing, and I am so sorry to hear about your concern. You are at an increased risk for blood clots right now. Pregnancy is a major risk factor for the development of dangerous blood clots. Women who are pregnant or who have just given birth are at increased risk for blood clots. Pregnancy does not directly cause blood clots, but it does pose a four-fold increased risk for the development of a blood clot. That risk actually increases to about 20-fold in the weeks immediately following childbirth, and is at its highest — a risk of 100-fold — in the first week after the baby is born. So, in my non-medical opinion, you are still at risk right now.

      I highly encourage you to read this information from the National Blood Clot Alliance – http://womenandbloodclots.org/pregnancy-and-post-childbirth/

      I would not say you are paranoid at all since you are at a very high risk right now, and I am glad to hear you have had these tests to investigate further. Please do not let anyone brush you off if you are concerned. I would make sure you know the signs and symptoms of blood clots and continue seeking assistance if you experience them – http://bloodclotrecovery.net/signs-and-symptoms-of-a-pe-or-dvt/

      My other question for you is, are you on any kind of preventative blood clot treatment? Many women are after giving birth, especially if they have a history or genetic risk for blood clots.

      I hope this helps in some way.

      You are not overreacting or being silly at all.

      Please take care,

      Sara

      • I’m not taking anything other than birth control at the moment. The pain comes and goes and it can be in my arm, leg, elbow, knee, etc. it’s not consistent at all. When I was delivering my baby they gave me some kind of clotting medicine twice to make sure I didn’t lose too much blood so that’s really what has me worried. Something I should add is that I was diagnosed with fibromyalgia during my teenage years but I’m not entirely convinced I have it due to my family always telling me it was just in my head. So I’m really confused. Most of my family keeps saying I’m paranoid and a hypochondriac and that if I had a blood clot something very serious would have happened by now. How long could I have one before something extreme happened? I have an appointment with my doctor on Monday, but I’m kind of afraid she will think I’m making it up, being stupid, or looking for attention. 🙁 I’m just desperate and scared at the moment.

        • Sara- Words to Run By Blog says:

          You are also at an additional risk being on birth control – http://womenandbloodclots.org/birth-control/. If you have a blood clot, you could have life-threatening symptoms of a blood clot in your lung at any time. There is no specific time when it could happen. Do you have any of these symptoms? http://bloodclotrecovery.net/signs-and-symptoms-of-a-pe-or-dvt/ If you do, seek medical attention and if you have symptoms of a PE or blood clot in your lung, go to the ER. You are at a high risk having given birth and being on birth control, you are not making it up to be worried. If your doctor says that, I would encourage you to seek alternative care.

        • Sara- Words to Run By Blog says:

          You already know you are at risk, know the symptoms and if you experience them, seek medical attention.

      • Sara- Words to Run By Blog says:

        These are going to be your best resources for more information, also that your medical provider should be aware of –
        http://www.stoptheclot.org/learn_more/womens_health_faq.htm
        http://womenandbloodclots.org/

        • Thank you. I went to the doctor and had blood work done today for it. Hopefully I’ll know something soon. I think I may be freaking myself out.

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  13. i have had an ultra sound done on my leg and was told the great saphenous vein does not work properly, plus I have variocous veins. Waiting for my date, with 2 weeks to go to have this vein lasered closed off and removal of the varcous veins, the pain around the side of my knee is growing to be extreme pain. Sometimes I can not drive, hard to sit, and at nights its a night mare of pain. It can grow from the pelvic/groin area all the way to the foot and feel like an ever lasting charlie muscle ampliied 5 times worse. Is this common for this kind of pain with this situation? I’m figuring its the inflammation around the knee area that causes a burning hot to touch sensation, or is that a sign of blood clot? Will I survive 2 more weeks waitting for my doctor appointment?

  14. Hello! I’m actually really frightened right now. See, I have restless leg and that has always gave me uncomfortable feelings in my leg ( but no shooting pain). I started birth control maybe a little less than two months ago and I know that’s a big factor in helping blood clots form. I also sit down for prolonged periods of time due to school and work and I forget to get up and walk around. Last night for maybe 5-10 minutes I felt a shortness of breath with a little heaviness in my chest, not exactly any sharp pain either. Ando this morning 6 hours after falling asleep I wake up to use the bathroom and can’t go back to sleep because of the legs, at least until I take a warm shower. I’m 19 years old and don’t smoke. Should I bring it up with my father and ask him to take me to the er or am I fine and just need to try to walk around a bit more? Hope to hear! Thank you!

  15. I had a leg cramp that was so severe last summer I went to the doctor. It’s like the charley horse just would not unclench. They examined my calf and sent me for an ultrasound to check for a clot. Everything was fine. A few months ago I started having pain like my tendon in the back of my calf had been pulled. It comes and goes. I have woken up twice this week with my calf cramping nd this morning I am having to use crutches to walk. My leg is very swollen and tender on the inside of my calf also. I do have a few varicose veins, but had an entire scan done a couple of years ago and they said all blood flow was normal. What do you think? Any advice would be helpful because I don’t want to waste any more money on doctors. I was diagnosed with lyme disease in March and really hate the whole issue with medical community where lyme disease is concerned. Currently, when I sit I have the least amount of pain and it is worse when lying down or walking. It does fluctuate.

  16. I am so worried something is wrong now that I have read all this , But I have been having the worst pain in my left back of my calf and sometimes the bottom of my foot but not as bad as the back of my calf ,, crazy thing is I went to the ER the other day because I am hurting in my ribs on the same side as well all the way around from the front to the back and the said it was nothing but Pleurisy. But now with this pain I am wondering if its not something more ,

  17. Great info, the best I have come across.
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  18. hello i just found out I have cdop when I went to the hospital thinking I was having a heart attack found out 3 broken ribs very painful and the doc onboard said something about blood clots? any thought about that? and what can I do about the pain from the ribs unbearable?????????

  19. About a month ago I was running across the road and suddenly felt intense pain in my calf as if someone had hit me with a plank. The calf was swollen. After a week of two the instep and ankle were swollen. One doctor felt it was deep vein thrombosis but the scan showed nothing so he sent me for a second opinion. That doctor said it was a ruptured tendon. I iced and kept it elevated for several weer and the swelling in the ankle went. The calf is still a bit plump. I have startred light exercises at home.Yesterday afternoon I woke up with a stiffness at the ankle and a tender lump to one side of the ankle. The pain got worst as time progressed to the point that I was moaning. I’m wondering if it is a thrombosis. A few days ago I have been experiencing slight dizziness but I have suffered from dizziness before. I have been drinking aspirins. that seems to be easing the pain. Im still hobbling. The pain is also in my knee and calf when it is really bad. It seems worse when I lie down.

  20. Ok, now I’m a bit concerned. About 3 month’s ago I want to say November I was woken up by this really sharp stabbing pain on the outer part of my knee. (The side of my hip) went to the doctor, she had an xray done and nothing was wrong apparently. Since then the pain has traveled up to my hip. Causing a tingly needle pin feeling on my quad. Thought maybe it’s the shoes? There’s times where I even feel like I drag my leg. Plus right knee pain for about 2 months which I figured maybe I just over did it while I was hiking uphill. Knee pain began in the back and now feels like it’s the whole knee. I’ve been diagnosed with Lupus with no symptoms. All I had was fatigue. The labs indicated high inflammation and Lupus .Actually began with these pains after I tried some inflammation meds Oct-Dec. Maybe just a side effect? I declined the meds after due to inflammation numbers rising higher, hair falling out, dizziness,headaches, neck pain, feet itching, basically the meds didn’t help me. If anything maybe made me worse. So in my mind I’m thinking blood clot. I was totally off balance in yoga today, dizzy thought I was going to faint. Stopped for a quick drink of water. And now googling my symptoms then came across this page. I’ve been active since the age of 12. Cross country, track, volleyball. To adult hood, run, hike,mma,yoga. I was unhealthy or about 6 months after my pops passed, fell into some depression gained weight. But then other back to it. So maybe my body is confused with my weight fluctuating, healthy to unhealthy then back to healthy? I don’t even know anymore. I was want to be normal active again. Yikes sorry this is long!

  21. I feel strange the time when suddenly i feel cold in my right side of the foot in right below the ankle, and the mean time it seems crawling to my right side of the forehead.
    it happens around 10-20 sec.
    please someone help me

  22. Signlady says:

    Thanks for this concise writing . . . I found it because I keep looking up,blood clots and seeing all these same symptoms – but I have only one symptom … severe aching in the back center of my thigh.
    It can’t be a muscle cramp because I climb ladders, get up and down off the floor painting – casual walk 3 miles. Never hurts then

    But at the end of the day, when I rest on the couch – it starts aching really bad and when I’m asleep it can wake me up. Some slight tingling of the whole leg to the foot – just basically burning aching from mid thigh to back of calf at it’s worse.
    I also often wake up at night with the exact same strange cramp – always in my left elbow – This elbow cramp has been going on over a year – but it’s almost always after I to to bed –
    Both these cramps make me feel like I want to ‘pop’ the joint or somethin’ but the thigh pain is not in the joint – it’s the center of the back of my thigh and it hurts much worse than the elbow – radiating down the back of my leg.
    There’s no discolouration whatsoever

    So I keep blowing off going to the doctor bc I have no insurance, I’m about 50lbs over-weight, and figure they’ll just tell me to lose weight.
    I’m pretty physically active in my job – and try to eat right mostly – but since I went in peri-menopause and full menopause the last 5 years my weight won t budge no matter what I try.

    I think I do have a poor immune system as my throat glands are often swollen.

    • Sara- Words to Run By Blog says:

      I am sorry to hear about the pain you are in. You mention menopause – are you taking treatment? If so, you are at risk for a blood clot:
      https://womenandbloodclots.org/hormone-replacement-therapy/

      I know what is is like to not have insurance, but if a blood clot in your leg would break off and travel to your lung, it can be deadly. I highly suggest getting your pain checked out. Pain was the only symptom I had of my blood clot in my leg.

      I hope this helps,

      Sara

  23. Stumbled across this page while looking for something totally different but then I thought here’s a chance to tell my story.
    I nearly died from DVT a few years back now (The blood clots had poison in them and the doctors didn’t know that at the time)
    After the Doctors put needles in my leg to thinnin and break down the blood clots, it went Septic and ended up turning into Necrotising Faccitis, which ate away the Flesh, Muscles, Calves and Left thigh, in both of my legs from my ankles to my hips. I was in Alfred Hospital for nearly a year with multiple surgerys and skin grafts done. Apparently I had died 7 times during the first weeks in hospital, I was in a coma for 27 days, when I woke up I was told that they were going to amputate my left leg to save my life my partner didn’t sign any papers but they were going to do it anyway if it hadn’t stopped spreading through my body. But when they went to take me into amputate the leg they found out minutes before the surgery that it had finally it stopped spreading and this is all while I was still on a coma, my partner video recorded me everyday. My legs were swollen with dark purple blotches on my legs, but when I had woke from my coma I didn’t know where or what had even happened I tried to get up but my legs wouldn’t work so I looked under the white sheet and seen that my legs were wrapped in this plastic vacuum sealed thing which was drawing out all the yucky stuff like pus/blood etc in and out of the hyprobarack chamber, and I was told I was never going to be able to walk ever again. I had skin taken from my arms, back and stomach and it was put on my legs, after 10months in the Alfred hospital I finally was able to be transferred to my local hospital close to home, and was in there for 3months then rehab for 2months i worked my but off because I was told I would never walk again and I thought I am not sitting in this wheelchair for the rest of my life so I got up it took me 2months to start walking but I couldn’t do it without something holding me up and today I can actually run, and do lots of things I was told I was never going to be able to do ever again. I still have no left thigh my muscles are slowly building back up and I’ve grown new calves which I thought I wouldn’t ba able to do. My left thigh is slowly growing but still not visible just looks like bones with skin around it except the back part where it actually starting to build fat and muscle looks and feels flubery till I tense, okay what I’m really trying to say make sure that u have the doctors tests for everything and make sure they check a patient with DVT to see if any of the blood clots have any poison in them before giving u blood thinners as it could be fatal…. I may look like a half monster now but I survived death.! And value everyday of my life.
    The only thing I’m not happy about is the way I was treated when I first was taken into hospital and they didn’t do any test to see if I had poison in the blood clots they just started gabbing me with needles to thinnin the blood straight away, I went outside for at least 10/15 mins for 1 last smoke then suddenly my legs wouldn’t move again so my partner ran inside the hospital grabbed a wheelchair for me and wheeled me in they asked why I left I said I didn’t I went out for a smoke but they treated me like I was a liar gave me filthy looks then as soon as I started having a fit or whatever I had they all ran to my aid and started working/resting on me, which should had been done from the very beginning.
    Other than the Wodonga, Victorian hospital that il never go to again even if I was dying again, I was shifted me to the Albury NSW hospital where they found out what was wrong straight away and said that they didn’t have the things/technology to do What needed to be done to save my life and I was flown straight to the Alfred Hospital in Melbourne..
    Today I’m a healthy 28 year old woman with a happy beautiful family of my own, I’m exercising everyday and I’m happy that I’m still here today to cherish every single second of every single day for the rest of my life to be here for my children and be around for/when my grandchildren are here (which will be many years before I have any grandchildren) and watch them grow up.
    Sorry it’s so long but hopefully by telling my story it could save someone else’s life.
    Thank you

  24. Parmanand says:

    About 2 weeks ago I notice back of my right knee hurting and the pain continue to the next foot…week later my calf muscle and my upper leg hurts not all the time. I notice no swelling nor discolouration in any leg not I don’t have and warn fever…I am watching it yet if it get worse I will visit a doctor 🙁

  25. Aofspaides says:

    It started about a week ago i noticed a irregular pain in the back of my calf. I thought nothing of it at first. as each day goes on Its getting worse. I have Lupus, RA, Mystenia Gravis and I have lupus anticoagulant and I am on a blood thinner. I at first questioned a blood clot however I have unexplained bruising on my abdoman and I have my right calf that litteriley feels like every muscle in it is pulled so tight, It hurts so bad to extend my foot to walk and also it hurts to touch. I dont think its a blood clot because i have no hot spots, no discoloration or anything, however i just do not know why it feels the way it does. My left leg has a little bit of it but i fell like that is more because i am over compensating for the right leg. please let me know our thoughts

  26. Not sure what this is!
    A little over 30 hours ago all of a sudden I got these sharp stabbing pains (not cramp) in the back of my right thigh. My thigh is now quite painful to sit on and it kind of aches. Whats weird is, when I inhale deeply or cough – I feel it in my thigh like pressure and pain at the same time. Any suggestions?

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  29. It just hppend to me last night how do I make it go away not seeing a dr

  30. OuchMyLegHurts says:

    The problem is making a doctor believe it. I have horrible pain for months now in one left – a leg where I had an embolism from an injury. No doctor believes me. I think my leg is swollen too (my calf is bigger than my thigh), but they still don’t believe me. In pain now – ow. Guess I’ll just wait to die.

  31. Same thing with me. Once the pulmonary embolism hit me I waited a good 24 hours to get help. My pain started in my arm and into my shoulder and neck. I took 2 vicodin and went to bed. Next day when I realized I was coughing up blood I knew I was in trouble. I walked around for years with a dvt. It was crippling. Doctors kept telling me it was nothing..maybe water on the knee. If anyone thinks they could have one make sure you do a real quick.google search on the best tests to identify the problem. Ultrasound below the knee for dvt is no good. Ask for the best test, the one that will show it..the clots. Its not something to play around with and many doctors overlook it.

  32. I think I have a DVT T^T it’s been a few days now since I have this T^T I can’t run anymore T^T the last time I ran was a day or two ago, it hour SO BAD!!! All I did the whole week was lay down on my bed or sit on it then watch Naruto Shippuden. Then on the seventh or maybe even sixth day I got up my right leg hurt I almost fell on my side T^T I’M CRYIN RN AND I CAN’T STOP!!! I TRIED MESSAGIBG MY MOM FOR HELP RN AFTER READING YOUR BLOG BUT I THINK SHE’S ASLEEP!!! AND I CAN’T WAKE MY GRANDMA UP BECAUSE SHE’S BEEN STRESSED LATELY!!!! I got no one rn T^T only myself T^T it hurts… still crying rn… I’m just 13… I don’t want to die just yet!!! I want to die with pride NOT LIKE THIS!!!! T^T HELP ME PLEASE T^T T^T T^T T^T T^T

  33. Okay sweetie, you need to breathe. You should never self-diagnose using the Internet. That is dangerous. Even with all the experience the members of this community have, you should be examined by a physician. Wake your mother up and tell her you need to go to the hospital right now. We will pray for you. Keep in touch and let us know how you are doing. Take care.

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  36. Hi there, I am 33 years old from Ogden Utah. My family and I traveled to San Francisco, California by car in July 2016 and now September 2016 I am having terrible calf pain. I did go to the ER 3 days ago and had an ultrasound done. They did not find any clot. This pain has been going on for over and week now. I have slight swelling in my legs and have edema (slight, not awful) they didn’t really seem worried about my leg pain or edema. The pain has not gotten better. It has now moved from my inner right ankle to the back of my calf…..I’m not and expert or anything, but non of the pulled muscle I have ever experienced in the past have just randomly moved. I’m terrified they missed it, but I also don’t want to jump to conclusions. I’ve iced it, heated it, put icey hot on it, elevated it, wore compression socks and nothing is making it better. Any suggestions on how to help this stupid pain. Just to add, it only hurts to walk on it. So I limp and take small steps, if I try to walk fast the whole calf will stiffen up in a Charlie horse and I literally wanna die for those 2-3 minutes. It doesn’t hurt to flex my calf muscles or stretch ONLY walking. So slow and steady and very careful. I have three little kids so imagine how annoying this is that I can’t keep up with any of them without my leg cramping up and my crying like a baby! I don’t know what else to do! I went to the doctor, I did the ultrasound test, I’ve done all the home remedies I can possibly think of. Any suggestions??

  37. Harold B. Cornish says:

    He is the issue, I have here what type of physician diagnosed you, what tests did they run, how soon was it determined, what type of treatment you went through, how long and the result.

    Most primary care physicians I doubt will diagnose this. So people can we get other than general information.

  38. I came home from work one night and I am on my feet for 8-9 hours, I was having a bad pain on top of foot. After 2 days the pain is worse and I really thought I may have a stress fracture. So the 3 rd morning the pain had radiated almost to my knee. I can not stand to touch it. Any touches on it causes very bad pain. and it just keeps moving up my leg and is really really painful. Do anyone think this could be a blood clot?? Never had one so don’t how it feels. All I know is that in pain, place where it is swolen i very warm, and the pain keeps moving up my leg. Can anyone tell if this sounds like a blood clot or what would cause leg to do this. Guess i do need to go on to ER.
    if anyone knows what could be causing this please e mail me or reply back to e mail address

  39. Michael McNeely says:

    I have had 1 major surgery in 2015 and one hernia surgery about 6 months ago. I have been have this swelling, throbbing and cramping pain in my right leg from the knee to the ankle. Its started at the top of my right leg and pelvis. My right foot has been feeling colder and colder the last couple of weeks. I have to keep turning my ankle and straightening my leg because its cramping and getting a Charlie horse. Its the whole muscle around from knee to ankle. No just lately my left side has been killing me like a runners cramp so much it makes me feel like I’m going to get sick. Meaning it hurts that much. Also the last week I’ve been super dizzy, hard to take a deep breath and feeling faint. Also I’m way overly tired. But the pain is so bad in my right leg I don’t sleep that much. It does feel like its in a vice. It seems to be 100× more noticeable when I’m relaxing. Like sitting or laying down.

    No meds are touching any of these to pains. I’m scared. I know thing isn’t right at all. But no one is listening to me at all. I’m not sure what to do.
    The scary part was last night. I was so dizzy and out of it that I felt drunk I guess. Felt like I was going to fall and both my legs were shaking like the muscles are really weak. I need some advice please.

  40. Thanks for sharing a detailed informative post about blood clot. It clear lots of questions about health.

  41. Hi; I am now 45 but when I was 25 I fell off a horse and had to have brain surgery. I was in a coma for 6 weeks. When I woke up I had a blood clot in my right leg. I was on a high dose of cumidin (?) For several weeks after being released from the hospital I had to go back weekly to have my blood drawn to see if it was too thin due to the medication. When I was finally taken off the med. my Dr. said that if my leg ever looked swollen to go to the hospital because the clot may have came back. Well since then I have gone back to the hospital 3 maybe 4 times and they have done ultrasounds on my legs to see if there was a clot? Everytime they said no. Over the years I get such a bad cramp in the calf of that same leg that a lot of times it has woke me up crying feeling like it would be better if they just cut the leg off just to get rid of the pain. (I’m sorry that’s the only way to describe how bad the pain was.) Anyways now even as I sit here writing this my right leg and foot, mostly ankle is so much bigger than my left. I cant wear certain shoes because the right one will be too small. I have stopped worrying about it so bad as I had before because they keep telling me no there is nothing wrong. I have spider veins all through out that leg and foot. They say that all comes from having a clot in the past. So what I need to know is where is the line to actually be worried and go back to the hospital? The leg stays swollen and more redish purple than the other. It always aches or cramps. This may be alittle off the subject but can you get clots in like the forearm part of your arm? Right now I have a lump that has developed right below my elbow. It was small at first but over the last day it keeps getting bigger (’bout the size of a golf ball now) and I can not touch it or lean it on anything because it hurts so bad! I don’t recall hitting it on anything but, due to my brain surgery I don’t really trust my memory. I cant help from wonder if it could be a clot? Only because I don’t remember hitting it and it keeps getting worse over the day.

  42. About 4 weeks ago I went through IVF and ended up with OHSS and fluid in my abdomin and about 3 weeks ago I had seVeralyn small charley horses during the night but my legs were swollen already from the IVF cycle. One day I fell asleep on the couch with my leg up on the back of the couch and woke up with what I thought was my worst charles horse ever and lasted a few minutes in the calf. Shortly after my legs began to swell more and it hurt more to lay down than walking. When I would first get up I could barely put my toe to the ground but it eased the more I walked and pain lasted a week. Since then I have had no pain but have developed dizziness, shortness of breath when I talk too much or get excited, headaches, and really low body temp…94 -95 degrees. It’s been 3 weeks now and I have contacted my nurse to do a follow up blood work from my OHSS, but my question is will a blood test tell me if I have HAD a blood clot after 3 weeks have gone by? I can’t find any info on line and was hoping someone can help ease my mind before my Monday appt? My IVF nurse is gone for the weekend and she said blood tests will take a week to come back, so if anyone has any idea on the time line for a pulmonary embolism, plz let me know.

  43. From approximately 12 months i have a little pain on my leg but from 2-3 weeks i think that it is increasing. From below to my knee to the foot i feel like someone is twisting my foot. At night i can’t sleep properly at a time it starts it destroys my sleep.Please inform me what is this disease i am so confused about this problem. I have also t.m.t report which result is negative. So please tell me in this condition what will be the disease

  44. I woke up this morning with whatlooked like a massive bruise on my thigh. It doesn’t feel like a bruise. It’s tender and warm. Blueish red in colour. I didn’t do anything to bruise it so I’m wondering if it’s a blood clot? I’ve never had any issues like this before. It’s about the size of my hand. Do I need to see a doctor?

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