What causes VTEs?
Immobility, combined with short or long term disease is the main cause of blood clots, which can form in the veins (deep vein thrombosis) or in the lungs (pulmonary embolism). Together they are known as venous thromboembolism (VTE) and can affect around 1 in 2000 people each year in the community. Deep vein thrombosis is less common in people under the age of 40 and more common in people over the age of 80
Blood clots form when the body's clotting system becomes activated in a compressed or damaged vein. It is widely perceived that flying in aeroplanes carries a high risk of VTE but in fact this is only a very minor risk factor for VTE. In reality we know from international studies that the biggest risk factor for VTE is being admitted to hospital because of acute illness or where surgery is needed.
How can we help?
Patients admitted to Salisbury District Hospital will now receive an assessment to see whether they are at risk of developing blood clots while in hospital. The assessments enable staff to identify low, high and very high risk patients and ensure that each patient is given the right level of treatment to prevent blood clots forming.
How can I get help?
VTE is common in patients who are in hospital because they are ill or require surgery. Getting the balance right in clot prevention requires close team working. We see our patients as being at the heart of this team. If a patient or a member of the family is admitted to hospital, we would ask them to talk to us about their risk of a clot so that we can advise on the best prevention for them.
There are various ways of preventing VTE and you can find more information about this on our website
You can assess your own risk of developing blood clots on NHS Choices website here