Congealed Blood: What Causes Blood to Clot?
Nearly 900,000 people in the United States are affected by blood clots each year.
Blood clots can be an unpredictable issue that goes unnoticed. Since the signs are below the skin, you can’t always tell if there’s a problem. Knowing the causes can help you give the best care possible to those in need.
Take a look below to learn about the most common causes of congealed blood.
One of the most common causes of congealed blood is surgical complications.
The surgery itself, and complications from it, can impact the flow of blood. Major surgeries like bypass and cancer operations are some of the most risky treatments. These operations are typically longer and require patients to be on bed rest.
Lack of movement during operations can lead to the settling of blood. Once it starts accumulating, there is an increase in the risk of clots. If there are any errors during the surgery, it could also increase inflammation and develop thick blood.
A broken bone, cuts, and muscle injuries are some of the most obvious injuries that lead to clotting.
Deep skin abrasions and severe bruises can also be contributing factors. If someone is dealing with injuries, our team can help ensure that drawing blood won’t make them worse.
Phlebotomists must be aware of obvious injuries that patients are dealing with. Our team can help you with blood testing to ensure protein levels are balanced in the blood. Without enough D-dimer proteins, the liquid thickens and can suggest clotting problems.
While learning about what causes blood to coagulate, you can’t overlook the small details.
When internal bleeding occurs, there is a significant threat of blood clots. The blood collects in the body since it can’t escape. Many people suffer from internal bleeding after accidents, injuries, and surgeries.
Although hidden injuries can increase the risk, there will be signs. If a patient has sensitivity, nausea, or pale skin, they need medical help. Symptoms can appear hours after impact, so monitor them for any changes and ask for updates.
No matter what age or gender, people increase their risk of excessive blood clotting from taking specific medications.
Oral contraceptives are one of the most researched medications that lead to clotting. Hormone therapy drugs may also increase the risk, along with non-aspirin NSAIDs and IV drugs.
Combining medications or mixing them with alcohol can make clotting symptoms appear or worsen. This is why it’s essential to understand the medications patients take when they get their blood drawn.
COVID took the world by surprise in 2020, and its effects are still impacting the world today.
Some people have developed small abnormal blood clots after getting sick with COVID. Since this disease can attack multiple organs in the body, it can quickly worsen symptoms. The disease increases your risk of bleeding disorders since your cells are trying to fight off foreign invaders.
Coronavirus can also contribute to blood clots since it increases inflammation. Inflammation causes clots since it prevents the body from healing and overproduces a protein in the blood. Wearing a mask, getting vaccinated, and properly washing hands can prevent people from catching a new strain of COVID-19.
Heart attacks occur when the arteries are too narrow for blood to pump.
Although not all heart attacks indicate clotting, it is more than likely the cause. Arteries must work efficiently to maintain the most important muscle in the body, the heart.
Anytime that blood flow becomes disrupted, the chance of clotting occurs. Some people can improve symptoms with blood thinners, but this can be a dangerous solution. Always reference the patient and their medical provider to feel confident with their choice.
Stress, a common cause of heart attacks, can be the cause of clotting. Increased anxiety raises blood pressure levels and strains blood vessel walls. Ultimately, enough anxiety and strain can cause blockages of blood to get to the heart and lungs.
When a woman becomes pregnant, she has an increased risk of being iron-deficient.
Iron panel blood testing can help you monitor the health of these individuals. Pregnancy changes the body, and it’s essential to understand how it impacts blood work and healthcare. If you want to provide the best care you can, you can learn more on our blog.
Pregnancy can increase the risk of clotting for several other reasons. Organs change positions throughout the pregnancy and there is increased pressure on veins as the infant grows. Inflammation is another symptom of pregnancy that can contribute to clot formation.
Pregnant women put on bed rest must take measures to prevent clotting. The increased weight and inflammation make them more susceptible to blocked arteries.
Prolonged Sitting & Bed Rest
It’s not uncommon for senior care centers to deal with blood clots.
Many of the people living in these communities have limited mobility and motivation. These conditions can result in more time spent in bed or sitting, especially if they’re in a wheelchair.
If you have patients or loved ones in a wheelchair or on bed rest, they are at a greater risk. Stretching and moving positions will help prevent this from being an issue. Do your best to observe patients with sedentary lifestyles and inquire about their comfort.
Patients of greater weight may develop clots at a faster rate. The weight puts pressure on the veins and body, which will eventually limit blood flow.
Help Identify the Causes of Congealed Blood
A deeper understanding of congealed blood will help you improve care for people.
When you know what the causes of clotting are, you don’t have to worry about being unprepared. Although the symptoms lie below the skin, there are plenty of signs to watch for. Use this info to engage with your patients and ensure they are getting the right treatment.
Precision Labs helps families and medical staff provide the best care possible with resources and accuracy. If you want to learn more about bleeding disorders and testing options, check out our blog for the latest info!