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How does the body clear clots?

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When your body senses that you’ve healed, it calls on a protein called plasmin. Here’s the clever part: Plasmin is actually built into the clot itself. It’s there the whole time, but it’s turned off. It just hangs out and waits.

To turn it on, your body releases a substance known as an activator. It wakes up plasmin and tells it to get to work tearing things down. That mainly means breaking up the mesh-like structure that helps the clot work so well.

From: How Do Blood Clots Dissolve? WebMD Medical Reference

SOURCES:

Mayo Clinic: “Blood Clots,” “Blood Clots in Surface Veins Often Treated with Self-care Techniques,” “Pulmonary Hypertension.”

American Society of Hematology: “Blood Clots.”

University of Southern California, Atherosclerosis Research Unit: “What is fibrinolysis?”

CDC: “Venous Thromboembolism (Blood Clots).”

American College of Physicians: “What You Should Know About Blood Clots.”

American Heart Association/American Stroke Association: “Anti-Clotting Agents Explained.”

Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center: “About Blood Clots and How to Treat Them.”

National Blood Clot Alliance: “Unfractionated Heparin (UFH),” “Warfarin,” “Direct Oral Anticoagulants (DOACs),” “Blood Clot Treatment and Recovery,” “Blood Clot FAQs – Deep Vein Thrombosis (DVT) and Pulmonary Embolism Follow Up Care.”

Medscape: “Thrombolytic Therapy.”

Clot Connect: “FAQ: When will my clot and pain go away?” “FAQ: When can I resume physical activities?”

NHS, St. George’s Healthcare: “Haematology: Pulmonary Embolus.”

Circulation : “Postthrombotic Syndrome.”

Reviewed by Jennifer Robinson on March 25, 2018

SOURCES:

Mayo Clinic: “Blood Clots,” “Blood Clots in Surface Veins Often Treated with Self-care Techniques,” “Pulmonary Hypertension.”

American Society of Hematology: “Blood Clots.”

University of Southern California, Atherosclerosis Research Unit: “What is fibrinolysis?”

CDC: “Venous Thromboembolism (Blood Clots).”

American College of Physicians: “What You Should Know About Blood Clots.”

American Heart Association/American Stroke Association: “Anti-Clotting Agents Explained.”

Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center: “About Blood Clots and How to Treat Them.”

National Blood Clot Alliance: “Unfractionated Heparin (UFH),” “Warfarin,” “Direct Oral Anticoagulants (DOACs),” “Blood Clot Treatment and Recovery,” “Blood Clot FAQs – Deep Vein Thrombosis (DVT) and Pulmonary Embolism Follow Up Care.”

Medscape: “Thrombolytic Therapy.”

Clot Connect: “FAQ: When will my clot and pain go away?” “FAQ: When can I resume physical activities?”

NHS, St. George’s Healthcare: “Haematology: Pulmonary Embolus.”

Circulation : “Postthrombotic Syndrome.”

Reviewed by Jennifer Robinson on March 25, 2018

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