There are two distinct forms of thrombosis, each of which can be presented by several subtypes.
Venous thrombosis is the formation of a thrombus (blood clot) within a vein. There are several diseases which can be classified under this category:
Deep vein thrombosis
Deep vein thrombosis (DVT) is the formation of a blood clot within a deep vein. It most commonly affects leg veins, such as the femoral vein. Three factors are important in the formation of a blood clot within a deep vein—these are the rate of blood flow, the thickness of the blood and qualities of the vessel wall. Classical signs of DVT include swelling, pain and redness of the affected area.
Portal vein thrombosis
Portal vein thrombosis is a form of venous thrombosis affecting the hepatic portal vein, which can lead to portal hypertension and reduction of the blood supply to the liver. It usually has a pathological cause such as pancreatitis, cirrhosis, diverticulitis or cholangiocarcinoma.
Renal vein thrombosis
Renal vein thrombosis is the obstruction of the renal vein by a thrombus. This tends to lead to reduced drainage from the kidney. Anticoagulation therapy is the treatment of choice.
Jugular Vein Thrombosis
Jugular Vein Thrombosis is a condition that may occur due to infection, intravenous drug use or malignancy. Jugular Vein Thrombosis can have a varying list of complications, including: systemic sepsis, pulmonary embolism, and papilledema. Characterized by a sharp pain at the site of the vein, it's difficult to diagnose, because it can occur at random.
Budd-Chiari syndrome is the blockage of the hepatic vein or the inferior vena cava. This form of thrombosis presents with abdominal pain, ascites and hepatomegaly. Treatment varies between drug therapy and surgical intervention by the use of shunts.
Paget-Schroetter disease is the obstruction of an upper extremity vein (such as the axillary vein or subclavian vein) by a thrombus. The condition usually comes to light after vigorous exercise and usually presents in younger, otherwise healthy people. Men are affected more than women.
Cerebral venous sinus thrombosis
Cerebral venous sinus thrombosis (CVST) is a rare form of stroke which results from the blockage of the dural venous sinuses by a thrombus. Symptoms may include headache, abnormal vision, any of the symptoms of stroke such as weakness of the face and limbs on one side of the body and seizures. The diagnosis is usually made with a CT or MRI scan. The majority of persons affected make a full recovery. The mortality rate is 4.3%.
Arterial thrombosis is the formation of a thrombus within an artery. In most cases, arterial thrombosis follows rupture of atheroma, and is therefore referred to as ''atherothrombosis''. There are two diseases which can be classified under this category:
A stroke is the rapid decline of brain function due to a disturbance in the supply of blood to the brain. This can be due to ischemia, thrombus, embolus (a lodged particle) or hemorrhage (a bleed). In thrombotic stroke, a thrombus (blood clot) usually forms around atherosclerotic plaques. Since blockage of the artery is gradual, onset of symptomatic thrombotic strokes is slower. Thrombotic stroke can be divided into two categories—large vessel disease and small vessel disease. The former affects vessels such as the internal carotids, vertebral and the circle of Willis. The latter can affect smaller vessels such as the branches of the circle of Willis.
Myocardial infarction (MI) is caused by an infarct (death of tissue due to ischemia), often due to the obstruction of the coronary artery by a thrombus. MI can quickly become fatal if emergency medical treatment is not received promptly. If diagnosed within 12 hours of the initial episode (attack) then thrombolytic therapy is initiated.
An arterial embolus can form in the limbs.
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Last Updated: Jul 30, 2013