Answers ( 2 )

  1. Hi. Thanks for trusting MediMetry with your query.
    Pulmonary Embolism means lodging of a embolus ( matter or substance usually blood clot or air) which could have travelled elsewhere from the body and finally via circulation got lodgedin one of the arteries present in the lungs causing blockage.
    Symptoms may vary from sudden catastrophic hemodynamic collapse to gradually progressive dyspnea in otherwise normal patients. It is a diagnosis of exclusion.
    Symptoms are usually nonspecific and include difficulty breathing, sudden pleuritic chest pain, fever, tiredness and, in more severe cases, light-headedness, fainting, loss of consciousness, or cardiorespiratory arrest. Signs are also nonspecific and may include increased heart rate and breathing rate per minute, and in more severe cases, fall in blood pressure, decreased oxygen concentration in blood, etc..
    Less commonly seen are cough, especially bloody or blood tinged, swelling of legs, fatigue, etc.
  2. While the reason for developing PE is not fully understood, it is thought that cancer may lead to tissue damage and inflammatory responses that lead to activation of the blood clotting system. Tumors also release chemicals which trigger clotting.
    Being on chemotherapy, surgery, hospitalization, being immobile, or having a central venous catheter also increases risk. Risk goes up as age increases, and having a family history of inherited or acquired blood diseases makes it more likely for a cancer patient to develop PE.
    Usually clotting risks are often checked upon hospitalization or treatment but a well informed patient may ask his caregiver for more info and options. Treatment usually consists of injections of heparin or low molecular weight heparin and other medications known commonly as Blood thinners. Compression stockings or pneumatic devices are also used to help prevent blood clots. Patients with cancer who are at home and can move around have a lower likelihood of developing Pulmonary Embolism.
    Hope this answers your question. Do write to us at MediMetry for any clarifications.
    Live healthy.