Embolism and its prevention

Written by: Dr. Vicente Riambau
Edited by: Top Doctors®

What exactly is an embolism?

It is defined as embolism to the phenomenon of migration or displacement of any intravascular element, usually a thrombus or coagulum, which ends up stopping at some point of the vascular tree causing circulatory obstruction.. It can occur in the arterial or venous territory.

The most frequent arteries are those that occlude cerebral arteries, causing stroke or cerebral infarction, or those that go to the extremities, causing ischemia of the same. Its origin is usually cardiological associated with atrial fibrillation or lesions of the arteries such as the carotids that supply the brain. Of the venous origin, the most feared is pulmonary thromboembolism (PTE) from venous thrombosis of the legs.



How can it be prevented?

The best way to prevent is to detect and treat possible sources or sources of embolism. In the arterial case, detecting and treating cardiac arrhythmias or valvulopathies or carotid stenosis; in the venous case, detecting venous thrombosis of the legs.

To detect arrhythmias such as atrial fibrillation, an electrocardiogram must be performed before any sensation of palpitations or dizziness. Valvulopathies, or malfunction of the valves of the heart, are detected with echocardiogram. Blood anticoagulation is useful to avoid embolisms of these origins. Carotid stenosis is detected with Doppler ultrasound. The use of antiplatelets and the correction of risk factors such as smoking, hypertension or hypercholesterolemia are necessary to prevent stroke. In some circumstances, interventions are needed to correct these outbreaks.

Venous thrombosis of the legs is detected with Doppler ultrasound after swelling and sudden pain of the extremity. Anticoagulation is also your treatment to prevent pulmonary emboli.


What consequences do you have in most cases?

The consequences can be serious or very serious. We are talking about the possibility of being prevented by a stroke or endangering a limb or not being able to breathe (pulmonary embolism). Even depending on their severity or extent, they can be deadly .

*Translated with Google translator. We apologize for any imperfection

By Dr. Vicente Riambau
Vascular Surgery

It is one of the best physicians in the specialty of vascular surgery with prestigious national and international level. She combines her private practice in Teknon Medical Center in Chief of Vascular Surgery Thoracic Institute in the Clinical Hospital of Barcelona. President of the European Society for Vascular Surgery ( ESVs ) and vice ISVs (International Society for Vascular Surgery).

*Translated with Google translator. We apologize for any imperfection

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