The Different Ways to Treat Pulmonary Embolism

Fresh and dried turmeric

Story at-a-glance -

  • Early detection and treatment are important because they help prevent damage to the lungs, and possibly even death
  • Once you have finished receiving treatment for your pulmonary embolism and you’re now resting at home, it’s important to make healthy adjustments to lower your risk of getting another blood clot

The main goal when it comes to treating pulmonary embolism is to prevent the clot from getting bigger. Early detection and treatment are important because they help prevent damage to the lungs, and possibly even death1 — which is why, in most cases, pulmonary embolism requires immediate medical treatment to prevent serious problems.

Upon diagnosis of pulmonary embolism, treatment typically starts with anticoagulants, a class of drugs commonly known as blood thinners. These medications actually don’t make the viscosity of your blood thinner, but only prevent new blood clots from forming.2 If you absolutely need to take anticoagulants, thoroughly consult with your doctor first because they are known to cause various side effects (some of which are serious), such as:

Bleeding

Abdominal pain

Headaches

Dizziness

Anemia

Diarrhea

Shortness of breath

Low blood pressure

Hypersensitivity reaction

Increased risk of bone fractures with long-term usage

In high-risk situations, surgery may be needed to help remove the blood clot and save your life, such as:3

Filters: An inferior vena cava filter may be inserted into the vein in your abdomen that returns blood from the body back into the heart. Essentially, a filter works by blocking blood clots from causing an embolism in your lungs. Depending on your condition, the filter may be permanent or removable after a certain amount of time.4

Catheter: This procedure involves inserting a catheter through your blood vessels until it reaches the blood clot. Once it reaches its destination, your physician will remove or dissolve the blockage depending on the judgment of the doctor.

Embolectomy: An embolectomy is the manual removal of the embolus via surgical means. It requires a specialized surgical team and is considered to be a last resort because it carries a high risk of fatality. This procedure is only recommended when the clot creates a high-risk situation.

These Foods May Help Lower Your Risk of Blood Clots

Once you have finished receiving treatment for your pulmonary embolism and you’re now resting at home, it’s important to make healthy adjustments to lower your risk of getting another blood clot. According to the Archives of Internal Medicine, patients who had their first pulmonary embolism have a higher risk of recurrence compared to those who have not had the disease before.5

To start, you may incorporate natural blood thinners into your diet. This is a safer approach compared to taking anticoagulants, which are known to have several side effects such as excessive bleeding, diarrhea and headaches.6 Here are some examples of natural blood thinners:7

Turmeric: Curcumin, the active ingredient found in turmeric, is reported to have anticoagulant properties that may help lower your risk of blood clots.8

Ginger: This popular cooking ingredient contains salicylate, a compound that may help keep blood from clotting.

Cinnamon: Coumarin, a compound found in cinnamon and cassia, has been shown to have potent anticoagulant abilities.9 However, be careful when using this spice, as long-term consumption can cause liver damage.

Cayenne peppers: Similar to ginger, cayenne peppers have salicylates in them. They also have other nutrients that may help lower blood pressure and increase blood circulation.

Vitamin E: This vitamin is believed to be a mild anticoagulant. Healthy options that contain generous amounts of vitamin E include dark leafy greens, avocados, olives, papayas and almonds.10

It’s important to be careful if you’re going to consume natural blood thinners. If you’re taking anticoagulants, these foods should not be mixed with the medications because they can exacerbate the drugs’ effects. To be on the safe side, consult with a doctor first before consuming natural blood-thinning foods to prevent any conflict with your ongoing treatments.11

MORE ABOUT PULMONARY EMBOLISM

Pulmonary Embolism: Introduction

What Is Pulmonary Embolism?

Pulmonary Embolism Symptoms

Pulmonary Embolism Causes

Pulmonary Embolism Types

Pulmonary Embolism Treatment

Pulmonary Embolism Prevention

Pulmonary Embolism FAQ


< Previous

Pulmonary Embolism Types

Next >

Pulmonary Embolism Prevention

Post your comment
Click Here and be the first to comment on this article