What is thrombolytic therapy?

Thrombolytic therapy is a treatment used to break up dangerous clots inside your blood vessels. To perform this treatment, your physician injects clot-dissolving medications into a blood vessel. In some cases, the medications flow through your bloodstream to the clot. In other cases, your physician guides a long, thin tube, called a catheter, through your blood vessels to the area of the clot. Depending on the circumstances, the tip of the catheter may carry special attachments that break up clots. The catheter then delivers medications or mechanically breaks up the clot.

Thrombolytic therapy commonly is used to treat an ischemic stroke, which is another name for a clot in a blood vessel in your brain.

It can also be used to treat clots in : –

  • A lung artery, called a pulmonary embolism;
  • The deep veins of your leg, called deep vein thrombosis (DVT);
  • Your heart, which may cause a heart attack;
  • An artery elsewhere in your body, such as in an arm or leg artery; or
  • A bypass graft or dialysis catheter that has become blocked.

How do I prepare?

First your physician will ask questions about your general health, medical history, and symptoms. In addition, your physician will conduct a physical examination. Together these are known as a patient history and exam. As part of your history and exam, your physician will ask you to list any medications, including vitamins or dietary supplements, you take. Some of these substances may affect your blood’s clotting ability. Your physician will also want to know when your symptoms occur and how often.

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Precautions Surgery in india

For thrombolytic therapy to be effective in treating stroke or heart attack, prompt medical attention is very important. The drugs must be given within a few hours of the beginning of a stroke or heart attack. This type of treatment is not right, however, for every patient who has a heart attack or a stroke. Only a qualified medical professional can decide whether a thrombolytic agent should be used. To increase the chance of survival and reduce the risk of serious permanent damage, anyone who has signs of a heart attack or stroke should get immediate medical help.

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Side Effects

Anyone who has fever or who notices bleeding or oozing from their gums, from cuts, or from the site where the thrombolytic agent was injected should immediately tell their health care provider.

People who are given thrombolytic therapy should also be alert to the signs of bleeding inside the body and should check with a physician immediately if any of the following symptoms occur : –

  • blood in the urine
  • blood in the stool, or black, tarry stools
  • constipation
  • coughing up blood
  • vomiting blood or material that looks like coffee grounds
  • nosebleeds
  • unexpected or unusually heavy vaginal bleeding
  • dizziness
  • sudden, severe, or constant headaches
  • pain or swelling in the abdomen or stomach
  • back pain or backache
  • severe or constant muscle pain or stiffness
  • stiff, swollen, or painful joints
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