Minor Leg Injuries May Up Clot Risk
Study Suggests Threefold Increase in Risk
WebMD News Archive
Clot Risk Higher in Elderly, Obese
Pulmonologist Victor F. Tapson, MD, of Duke University Medical Center, has
studied deep vein blood clots for many years.
He says the new study should serve to raise awareness among doctors and
"I don't think it would surprise most experts that minor leg injury would be
a risk factor for these clots, but it is not something that most clinicians are
aware of," he tells WebMD. "This is an important paper."
The findings could be especially important for patients at high risk of
developing blood clots, such as those who are elderly, obese, or who have a family
history of blood clots.
"These people need to be aware that even minor injuries and a relatively
short duration of inactivity could lead to blood clotting," Richard C. Becker,
MD, director of the Duke Cardiovascular Thrombosis Center, tells WebMD.
As many as three in 1,000 people develop deep vein clots each year. Although
most people who experience minor leg injuries have little to worry about,
Rosendaal says everyone should be aware that such injuries can increase their
"If you sprain your ankle and your ankle hurts and is swollen, that is to be
expected," he says. "But if the calf or thigh begins to hurt or swells too,
that is not normal. And if you develop pulmonary symptoms like shortness of breath
or pain in the chest, don't ignore