Rutgers Robert Wood Johnson Medical School researchers have discovered that the coronavirus may cause blood clots in an individual’s arms. Their findings, which were reported in the “Viruses” journal, delve into how inflammation brought about by the coronavirus can result in upper extremity blood clots.
This case study is part of a bigger study by the institution involving a group of patients that had contracted the coronavirus infection and were either discharged or admitted to a hospital between March and May of last year.
While researchers do know that the disease may cause lower extremity deep vein thrombosis, this is the first study to record that the fatal ailment brought about a recurrence in the arm of an old man aged 85 who had been diagnosed with upper extremity blood clots prior to infection.
Payal Parikh, lead author of the study and an assistant professor of medicine at the institution, explained that the old man had complained to his primary care physician about swelling in his left arm and, upon going to the hospital for further treatment, was diagnosed with an asymptomatic coronavirus infection and a blood clot in his upper arm. Parikh explains that the patient was then hospitalized to manage the deep vein blood clot, despite his normal oxygen levels.
Center for Advanced Biotechnology and Medicine director Martin Blaser, a professor at Rutgers Robert Wood Johnson Medical School, co-led the case study.
The study noted that, in many cases, deep vein thrombosis occurs in an individual’s legs. Only an estimated10% of blood clots occur in an individual’s arms, with 9% of those cases recurring.
Parikh noted that this was a cause of concern, because in 30% of these individuals, the blood clot could travel to their lungs, which may be fatal. The researcher added that other disabling complications included arm fatigue, pain and persistent swelling.
The study proposes that physicians should consider testing for the coronavirus and deep vein thrombosis in patients who complain of unexplained swelling. Additionally, the researchers suggest that individuals who test positive for the coronavirus should seek medical attention if they have any unexplained swelling, are experiencing shortness of breath or have diminishing oxygen levels.
Furthermore, Parikh stated, individuals who have chronic medical ailments that make them more susceptible to blood clots or who have previously been diagnosed with deep vein thrombosis should remain vigilant, as this increases the chance of a deep vein thrombus recurring, especially if they contract the coronavirus infection.
Such research findings give a whole new meaning to the solutions and resources provided by companies such as United Medical Equipment Business Solutions Network Inc., which is committed to address the needs of seniors as well as other vulnerable groups during this pandemic.
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