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D-dimer test for deep vein thrombosis

A d-dimer test is a blood test that measures a substance released as a blood clot breaks up. D-dimer levels are often higher than normal in people who have a blood clot.

This blood test may be used to help diagnose a blood clot in the leg (deep vein thrombosis).

Recommended Related to DVT (Deep Vein Thrombosis)

Causes of Deep Vein Thrombosis (DVT)

Deep vein thrombosis (DVT) occurs when a blood clot forms in a vein deep inside a muscle in your body. It usually happens in the legs, but can also develop in your arms, chest, or other areas of your body. And though DVT is common, it can be dangerous. The blood clot can block your circulation or lodge in a blood vessel in your lungs, brain, heart, or other area. The clot can cause severe organ damage and even death -- within hours. The main cause of DVT is poor blood flow. When circulation...

Read the Causes of Deep Vein Thrombosis (DVT) article > >

This test may be used to check your risk of a blood clot in a lung (pulmonary embolism) after you stop taking anticoagulants. The test can help your doctor decide if you should not take anticoagulants anymore or if you should start taking them again.

A low d-dimer test result may mean that a deep vein thrombosis or pulmonary embolism is less likely. A high d-dimer test result may not always be caused by a blood clot in the leg or lung.

By Healthwise Staff
Primary Medical Reviewer E. Gregory Thompson, MD - Internal Medicine
Specialist Medical Reviewer Jeffrey S. Ginsberg, MD - Hematology
Last Revised January 5, 2010

WebMD Medical Reference from Healthwise

Last Updated: January 05, 2010
This information is not intended to replace the advice of a doctor. Healthwise disclaims any liability for the decisions you make based on this information.

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