#AwarenessMatters Blood Clot Awareness Month

Blood Clot Awareness 15 Cover

The facts are staggering – every time I read them.

  • Blood clots (DVT and PE) affect an estimated 900,000 Americans each year (Source).
  • Blood clots (DVT and PE) kill an estimated 100,000 Americans each year. The number of deaths from blood clots  exceeds those from breast cancer, AIDS and motor vehicle accidents combined (Source).
  • One person every minute will be diagnosed with DVT in the U.S. One person every six minutes will die from a PE in the U.S. (Source)
  • Blood clots are a leading cause of preventable hospital deaths in the United States (Source).
  • Blood clots are the leading cause of maternal deaths in the United States.
  • 1 in 3 people who are diagnosed with PE will die.
  • In 25 percent of people who experience a PE, the first symptom is sudden death.

The number of deaths from blood clots exceeds those from breast cancer, AIDS and motor vehicle accidents combined. Yet, they are virtually unheard of by the general public. Until very recently, blood clots have even gone unnoticed by the media, however, that is beginning to change and I believe we can continue to make a difference. Thanks to the advocacy work of survivors like NASCAR’S Champion Driver Brian Vickers blood clots are becoming something people have heard of. Even more recently, the unfortunate passing of former former Trail Blazers player Jerome Kersey and blood-clot related health scare of Heat forward player Chris Bosh have elicited even more awareness to this deadly injury/illness. Blood clots do not discriminate, they can impact anyone at any time. As more and more people who have lost because of or survived blood clots, the more and more awareness we can raise. #AwarenessMatters. It makes a difference. We can make a difference.

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Information Sharing

Share, share, share. Tell someone you know about the signs, symptoms and risk factors of blood clots. Knowing could save your life or the life of someone you love. You can also share this post on social media or through email.

Symptoms of DVT
    • Swelling in the affected leg, including swelling in your ankle and foot.
    • Pain in your leg; this can include pain in your ankle and foot. The pain often starts in your calf and can feel like cramping or a charley horse. It won’t go away with regular stretching, massaging or rest.
    • Warmth over the affected area.
    • Changes in your skin color, such as turning pale, red or blue or purple.
    • You need to know in about half of all cases, deep vein thrombosis occurs without any noticeable symptoms.
Symptoms of PE
    • Unexplained sudden onset of shortness of breath
    • Chest pain or discomfort that worsens when you take a deep breath, cough or even lie down
    • Feeling light headed or dizzy, or fainting
    • Rapid pulse
    • Sweating
    • Coughing up blood
    • A sense of anxiety, nervousness or impending doom
Risk Factors
    • Hospital stay
    • Major surgery such as abdominal or pelvic surgery
    • Knee or hip replacement
    • Major trauma such as an auto accident or fall
    • Nursing home living
    • Leg paralysis
    • Older than 65 years
    • Trips over four hours by plane, car, train or bus
    • Active cancer or chemotherapy treatment
    • Bone fracture or cast
    • Birth control pills, patch or ring
    • Hormone replacement therapy
    • Pregnancy or a recent birth
    • Prior blood clot or family history of blood clots
    • Heart failure
    • Bed rest over three days
    • Obesity
    • Genetic/hereditary or acquired blood clotting disorder

Share your story. How are you raising awareness this March?

There is hope for healing and you are not alone,



  1. Sara, Thank you for your continued interest in keeping us informed. I pray that all is going well with you and your family.


  2. Sara keep up the hard work!!!! You are changing lives!!!!

  3. Cindy Martin says

    Please don’t forget pain or clots in upper extremities. I have had two blood clots, one in each arm over the last 3 years.

  4. Gillian Joanisse says

    I am currently in recovery for a rare blood clot in a vein that drains blood from the brain. I’m disappointed to see no mention of this type of clot in your campaign information. I had never heard of this type of clot prior to being diagnosed and almost didn’t bother getting medical attention as the only symptom I had was a severe headache which I have had before. Please add information on this type of very dangerous clot.

  5. Shelby Weathers says

    I had a baby in this past May 2016, I passed out I front of my 4 year old 2 months after my c-section. This was the second time I have gotten a blood clot and I have them in both legs and both lungs right now. I’m on blood thinners for the rest of my life and can’t have anymore children and I’m only 26. My leg was so swollen and was hurting until I passed out. It almost killed me. The clot in my left leg was so huge it went from my knee all the way to my pelvic and was making its way to my heart. Thankfully my Dr sent me to another hospital where I had surgery. I was awake during the surgery all I was given was pain meds they went into the bend of mthe knee using a catheter and a iv and to leave it in for 24 hrs to help dissolve the clot but it didn’t so they put stints in it and I am vein collapse when they took the items out so I have stint in the middle of it to keep it open. I’m very lucky it didn’t kill me. The first two hospitals I went to before I got sent to the one that did surgery didn’t do anything for me other than get up and walk and the swelling was going to there til the clots goes away so I did almost die til I went to Shelby Medical in Alabaster Alabama. If it wasn’t for them I wouldn’t be on this earth with my two beautiful babies and wonderful husband

  6. I am in my seventies, educated, aware, knowledgeable, all the lovely words we apply to those we consider “smart cookies”, yet I knew nothing at all about DVTs and other blood clotting issues, until I woke up with a massive clot from center of left calf to my navel.

    The statistics are horrifying – how could 300,000 people die of blood clots each year and the rest of us not know? How could blood clots kill more people annually than breast cancer, automobile crashes, and AIDS combined and most of us remain blissfully unaware?

    As Sara has written, more and more news has highlighted blood clots, and more of us are talking about this phenomenon. Suddenly I am speaking to everyone, even strangers in a grocery store if opportunity opens, regarding blood clots. There was no reason that I am yet aware of for me to wake with a thigh three times normal size and become very ill, sufficiently that I was transported from the local ER by ambulance to another, larger facility and popped into ICU. Now I talk about this, the possibility that a blood clot can occur in any person, any age, any health situation, and what the symptoms are, so that people will be thinking, not only about themselves in this possibility, but their friends and relatives as well.

    Thank you so much, Sara, for all you do to spread the word, as well as to encourage and enlighten and support those already affected.


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