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'COVID Not Just A Lung Disease': Experts Say 'dangerous Blood Clots Observed In Patients'

Experts found that COVID-19 isn't only a lung disease as previously believed, but can also cause dangerous blood clots in the human body.


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Experts claim there is growing evidence that COVID-19 isn't only a lung disease as previously believed, but can also cause dangerous blood clots that must be retrieved quickly to save limbs in certain cases.

Blood clot cases in COVID patients increasing in India

According to several reports (globally), the frequency of blood clot formation known as deep vein thrombosis (DVT) in hospitalised COVID-19 patients is 14-28%, while the severity of arterial thrombosis is 2-5 lower than this. If DVT is a severe disorder that occurs when a blood clot forms in a deep vein, arterial thrombosis occurs when a clot forms in an artery. Arteries transport oxygen-rich blood from the heart to the body, while veins transport low-oxygen blood from the body back to the heart.

Experts say the situation in India is similar, emphasising that the infection affects the blood vessels as well as the lungs.

COVID is not just lung disease

Dr Ambarish Satwik, vascular and endovascular surgeon at Delhi's Sir Ganga Ram Hospital, in a statement, said, "We are dealing with five-six such cases per week on average. This week it has been one a day of such complications."

As per Dr Amrish Kumar, consultant, cardiothoracic vascular department, Aakash Healthcare in southwest Delhi, the prevalence of blood clot formation in COVID-19  patients is high with conditions such as type-2 Diabetes Mellitus, though the overall aetiology remains a mystery. 

In a tweet earlier this week, Dr Satwik brought attention to the COVID-clot connection by showing a blood clot cast obtained from a COVID-19 patient's lower limb arteries. Satwik said on Wednesday, "What COVID clots look like. Covid produces blood clots. The incidence of heart attack, stroke, or limb loss due to an arterial clot in Covid varies from 2 per cent-5 per cent. We pried these out of the lower limb arteries of a Covid patient. We were able to save the limb."

He explained, "So we had to physically do a surgical procedure and extract these clots, otherwise there would have been gangrene, and he would have ended up with an amputation. We were successfully able to take the clots out and save the limb."

Satwik noted, since blood vessels can be found all over the body, clots can form anywhere. Some of these clots become macroscopic blood clots as they occupy large blood vessels, he added.

(with inputs from PTI)

Picture Credit: Pixabay/Shutterstock

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