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B-38/56, Lane-4

Sheel Nagar Colony, Mahmoorganj, Varanasi, UP

Pulmonary Embolism

Pulmonary embolism (PE) is a serious and potentially life-threatening medical condition that occurs when a blood clot, usually from the deep veins of the legs or pelvis (deep vein thrombosis or DVT), travels to the lungs and blocks one or more pulmonary arteries. This blockage can prevent blood flow to the lungs, leading to various complications.

Causes of Pulmonary Embolism:
  1. Deep Vein Thrombosis (DVT): The majority of pulmonary embolisms are caused by blood clots that originate in the deep veins of the legs or pelvis.

  2. Risk Factors:

    • Prolonged immobility (such as long flights or bed rest after surgery)
    • Surgery, especially joint replacement surgery
    • Cancer and cancer treatments
    • Smoking
    • Obesity
    • Genetic predisposition to blood clotting disorders
    • Conditions like atrial fibrillation and certain heart diseases
Symptoms of Pulmonary Embolism:
  1. Shortness of Breath: Sudden onset of difficulty breathing, often without an apparent cause.
  2. Chest Pain: Sharp, stabbing chest pain that may become worse when breathing deeply, coughing, or even swallowing.
  3. Rapid Heart Rate: Increased heart rate (tachycardia) is common.
  4. Cough: Dry or bloody cough, sometimes accompanied by bloody or discolored sputum.
  5. Leg Swelling: Swelling, redness, or warmth in one or both legs (indicating DVT).
Diagnosis and Treatment:
  1. Diagnostic Tests:

    • CT Pulmonary Angiography: Imaging test to visualize blood flow in the lungs.
    • D-Dimer Test: Blood test to measure a substance released when a blood clot breaks up.
    • Ultrasound: To detect deep vein thrombosis.
  2. Treatment:

    • Anticoagulant Medications: Blood thinners to prevent further clotting.
    • Thrombolytic Therapy: Medications to dissolve blood clots in emergency situations.
    • Inferior Vena Cava (IVC) Filter: In rare cases, a filter may be inserted to catch clots before they reach the lungs.
  1. Anticoagulant Medications: Prescribed for individuals at high risk of blood clots.
  2. Compression Stockings: Aid in preventing DVT by promoting blood flow in the legs.
  3. Mobility: Regular movement and exercise to prevent blood stagnation.
  1. Pulmonary Hypertension: Elevated blood pressure in the pulmonary arteries.
  2. Chronic Thromboembolic Pulmonary Hypertension (CTEPH): Long-term effects of unresolved clots.

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