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Understanding Blood Clots in Central California

Blood clotting serves an important role in the human body. It prevents you from bleeding out when you sustain a cut or an injury that causes bleeding. However, when blood clots form inside your blood vessels, they are dangerous. 

Blood clots can grow, break loose, circulate within your body, become stuck, and eventually block blood flow to vital organs or tissues. Blockages in your blood vessels can cause very serious health problems, including stroke and heart attack

Blood clots may require emergency treatment. If you experience signs of blood clots in Central California, call 911 or visit a Dignity Health Central California emergency room right away. Use our InQuicker tool to select your estimated hospital arrival time and wait at home until your time to be seen.


Spotting Blood Clot Symptoms

Blood clots can produce different signs and symptoms depending on what part of the body they affect:

  • Abdominal blood clots cause nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, and severe abdominal pain.
  • Brain blood clots cause stroke symptoms, which include problems with speech, vision changes, and weakness.
  • Heart blood clots results in heart attack symptoms such as chest pain, sweating, and difficulty breathing.
  • Leg blood clots symptoms range from mild cramping and tenderness to numbness and a blue coloring of the skin.
  • Lung blood clots create shortness of breath, chest pain, and cough.

If you experience any of these symptoms, see your Dignity Health Central California doctor right away or go to the nearest emergency room.


What Causes Blood Clots?

Your chances for developing blood clots increase if you: 

  • Are 65 years or older
  • Have a family history of blood clots
  • Are bedridden, sedentary, or obese
  • Have varicose veins, heart disease, or a history of blood clot problems
  • Recently had surgery
  • Are taking hormones, including birth control

You can lower your risk for blood clots by maintaining a healthy weight, staying physically active, and following your doctor’s recommendations for known medical conditions.


Blood Clot Treatment at Dignity Health Central California

Treatment depends on whether your blood clot is in a vein or an artery. Your doctor will prescribe blood thinning drugs (anticoagulant) to stop the clot from growing inside a vein and help your blood flow past the clot. A procedure to place a filter in the large vein that carries blood to your heart (vena cava) may also be necessary. This will prevent a clot from entering your heart or lungs. 

Clots in your arteries are more dangerous, and require emergency treatment. A catheter-based procedure can be used to break up or remove or remove an arterial blood clot. Clot-busting drugs (thrombolytics) can be used if immediate surgical treatment is not necessary.

Our emergency department is open 24 hours a day, seven days a week to help with your unexpected medical concerns. Learn more about Dignity Health emergency services in our Central California communities.

Dignity Health Central California offers expert, personalized treatment of blood clots in Bakersfield, Merced, San Andreas, and Stockton, CA.