Understand the Risk to You & Your Baby

What is DVT? Your veins carry blood from all parts of your body back to your heart. Sometimes, a blood clot can happen in one of those veins. This is called Venous Thrombosis (VTE). The most common type of blood clot in pregnancy is Deep Vein Thrombosis (DVT), which is a clot in a vein deep below your skin’s surface. DVT can appear in the deep veins in the back of your leg, or in your calf or pelvis.

How will I know if I have a blood clot?

  • Pain, tenderness or swelling, usually in one of your legs, although both legs could be affected
  • Redness or changes in your skin color
  • Warmer-feeling skin in the area of the clot
  • Veins on your legs that look larger than usual

It's common to have swelling and discomfort in your legs during pregnancy, so it doesn’t always mean there’s a problem. If you believe you have a blood clot, your obstetrician or midwife will arrange for you to have an ultrasound to check for clots. This is the same type of ultrasound used to check your baby’s health in pregnancy, so it's very safe.

When are blood clots dangerous?

If you have a blood clot and it isn’t treated, it can come away from your leg and become lodged in one of your lungs. This is called a pulmonary embolism (PE). Pulmonary embolism symptoms can vary greatly, depending on how much of your lung is involved, the size of the clots and your overall health — especially the presence or absence of underlying lung disease or heart disease. Pulmonary embolism can be life-threatening. Seek immediate medical attention if you experience any of the common symptoms below:

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Shortness of Breath
The most common symptom of a pulmonary embolism is shortness of breath. This symptom typically appears suddenly and always gets worse with exertion.

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Chest Pain or Tightness
You may feel like you're having a heart attack. The pain will get worse with exertion or bending or stooping, but won't go away when you rest.

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Coughing Up Blood
Coughing up blood can take different forms: The blood may be bright red or pink and frothy, or it may be mixed with mucus. Either can be a sign of a PE.

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Other Symptoms
Other common symptoms include bluish skin (cyanosis), dizziness, anxiety, clammy skin, increased breathing pattern and heartrate and low blood pressure.

Am I at risk of getting a blood clot?

Yes, pregnancy makes you more prone for blood clots. In pregnancy, you’re up to 10 times more likely to develop a blood clot than a non-pregnant woman your age. Your risk of developing a blood clot increases as your pregnancy progresses and is highest in the first three weeks after giving birth. Other factors that can further raise your chances of developing deep vein thrombosis in pregnancy include:

  • You’ve had DVT in the past
  • You have thrombophilia, which means your blood is more likely to clot
  • You have another medical condition that increases your risk of a clot, such as heart disease, lupus, or sickle cell disease
  • You’re over 35 years old
  • You are a current or past smoker
  • You’re overweight, with a BMI of 30 or higher pre-pregnancy or in early pregnancy
  • You have had three or more babies already
  • You have varicose veins
  • You’re on bed rest or use a wheelchair
  • You’re expecting multiples

Why am I more likely to get DVT while pregnant?

Venous Thromboembolism (VTE), which encompasses both DVT and PE occurs in about one in every 1,000 pregnancies. While those numbers make it a relatively uncommon complication, VTE actually crops up 5 to 10 times more frequently in expecting women than in other women of the same age — and 20 times more frequently in the six weeks after birth.

Clotting
Nature, wisely worried about too much bleeding at childbirth, tends to increase the blood’s clotting ability around birth — occasionally too much. It’s also your body’s way of helping the placenta to work during pregnancy.
Circulation
Women are most likely to experience a blood clot in their first three months of pregnancy due to sluggish blood flow in the compressed vessels surrounding the pelvis, caused by hormones and a growing uterus.
Vein Damage
During natural childbirth and cesarean section deliveries, your veins can become slightly damaged as your baby presses on the veins to your pelvis. This increases the chance of a clot developing around the damage.

Get Help Today... at Little or No Cost to You!

Our products are designed to help prevent the occurrence of blood clots in the deep veins of the legs with flexible, simple intermittent pneumatic compression (IPC) therapy. Intermittent pneumatic compression devices prevent venous thrombosis and DVT by enhancing blood flow in the deep legs of the veins. These devices inflate and deflate knee-high wraps, which reduces pooling of blood in the legs. This non-invasive therapy is the best alternative for pregnant women wanting to limit the medications that their unborn child is exposed to. Hospitals have been using similar blood clot prevention devices for decades with great success. However, never before has this therapy been able to be used in the comfort of your own home with such convenience. This in-home convenience makes intermittent pneumatic compression devices ideal for busy pregnant women and those on bed rest.

Consult with one of our DVT Specialists to get approved for your in-home unit today! Simply fill out our online form or call 954.707.9373, and you will be contacted within 24 hours. The ordering process is simple! We handle billing your insurance, shipping the device and offer patient education for a completely hassle-free way to help you prevent DVT-causing edema at home.