Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Infection linked to dangerous blood clots in veins and lungs

Date:
April 3, 2012
Source:
University of Michigan Health System
Summary:
Obesity, smoking and diabetes are among the most common risk factors linked to blood clots. But a new study has identified another big risk that isn't on the list -- infection.

Research shows iOlder adults who get infections of any kind -- such as urinary, skin, or respiratory tract infections -- are nearly three times more likely to be hospitalized for a dangerous blood clot in their deep veins or lungs, University of Michigan Health System research shows.

The most common predictor of hospitalization for venous thromboembolism -- a potentially life-threatening condition that includes both deep-vein and lung blood clots -- was recent exposure to an infection, according to the study released April 3 ahead of print in Circulation.

"Over half of older Americans who were hospitalized for such blood clots had an infection in the 90 days prior to the hospitalization," says lead author Mary Rogers, Ph.D., M.S., research assistant professor in Internal Medicine at the University of Michigan Medical School and research director of the Patient Safety Enhancement Program at the U-M Health System and the VA Ann Arbor Healthcare System.

"This is important because infections are common and many people do not link infections with developing blood clots. In fact, many educational websites do not list infections as a risk factor for blood clots -- but they are."

The study comes as the rate of hospitalization for venous thromboembolism steadily increases in the United States, with more than 330,000 hospital admissions for this condition a year.

"We would like to decrease the number of preventable hospitalizations, both for the benefit of the patient and to help bring down the cost of medicine," says Rogers, pictured left. "We wanted to study the triggers of hospitalization to help us understand what is driving such admissions and to think about actions we can take in order to prevent these hospitalizations."

If the infection occurred during a previous hospital or nursing home stay, patients were nearly seven times more likely to be admitted for a blood clot. Those who got the infection at home were nearly three times more likely to be sent to the hospital for a blood clot within 90 days.

The study also found that other strong predictors of hospitalization for blood clots included blood transfusions and drugs prescribed to stimulate red blood cell production (known as erythropoiesis-stimulating agents), which are sometimes given to treat anemia. The risk of hospitalization for blood clots was nine times greater after the use of these drugs.

Rogers and her colleagues conducted the study using participants in the Health and Retirement Study, a nationally-representative sample of older Americans, and combined their information with Medicare files. The Health and Retirement Study is conducted by the U-M Institute for Social Research on behalf of the National Institute of Aging.

"There is a national effort to decrease infections in hospitals but we need to pay attention to prevention regardless of where we are. Older Americans can help out by keeping up-to-date with their immunizations and practicing good hygiene such as hand washing," Rogers says. "This is particularly important for people who are already at higher risk of blood clots. This includes smokers, people who are overweight, and those individuals who are immobile."

"Often we don't think about the downstream consequences of infection," Rogers adds "The infection itself may trigger blood clots in your deep veins which may travel to your lungs and block the arteries there. This can be fatal. It's a risk both patients and physicians need to be aware of."

In addition to Rogers, authors of the study were Kenneth Langa, M.D., Ph.D.; Deborah Levine, M.D., MPH; Neil Blumberg, M.D.; Scott Flanders, M.D.; and Vineet Chopra, M.D.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by University of Michigan Health System. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Mary A.M. Rogers, Deborah A. Levine, Neil Blumberg, Scott A. Flanders, Vineet Chopra, and Kenneth M. Langa. Triggers of Hospitalization for Venous Thromboembolism. Circulation, 2012 DOI: 10.1161/CIRCULATIONAHA.111.084467

Cite This Page:

University of Michigan Health System. "Infection linked to dangerous blood clots in veins and lungs." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 3 April 2012. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/04/120403124358.htm>.
University of Michigan Health System. (2012, April 3). Infection linked to dangerous blood clots in veins and lungs. ScienceDaily. Retrieved July 23, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/04/120403124358.htm
University of Michigan Health System. "Infection linked to dangerous blood clots in veins and lungs." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/04/120403124358.htm (accessed July 23, 2014).

Share This




More Health & Medicine News

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Courts Conflicted Over Healthcare Law

Courts Conflicted Over Healthcare Law

AP (July 22, 2014) Two federal appeals courts issued conflicting rulings Tuesday on the legality of the federally-run healthcare exchange that operates in 36 states. (July 22) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Why Do People Believe We Only Use 10 Percent Of Our Brains?

Why Do People Believe We Only Use 10 Percent Of Our Brains?

Newsy (July 22, 2014) The new sci-fi thriller "Lucy" is making people question whether we really use all our brainpower. But, as scientists have insisted for years, we do. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Scientists Find New Way To Make Human Platelets

Scientists Find New Way To Make Human Platelets

Newsy (July 22, 2014) Boston scientists have discovered a new way to create fully functioning human platelets using a bioreactor and human stem cells. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Gilead's $1000-a-Pill Drug Could Cure Hep C in HIV-Positive People

Gilead's $1000-a-Pill Drug Could Cure Hep C in HIV-Positive People

TheStreet (July 21, 2014) New research shows Gilead Science's drug Sovaldi helps in curing hepatitis C in those who suffer from HIV. In a medical study, the combination of Gilead's Hep C drug with anti-viral drug Ribavirin cured 76% of HIV-positive patients suffering from the most common hepatitis C strain. Hepatitis C and related complications have been a top cause of death in HIV-positive patients. Typical medication used to treat the disease, including interferon proteins, tended to react badly with HIV drugs. However, Sovaldi's %1,000-a-pill price tag could limit the number of patients able to access the treatment. TheStreet's Keris Lahiff reports from New York. Video provided by TheStreet
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins