DVT Risk Factors
Some of the risk factors for DVT include sitting for a long time, having low blood flow in a deep vein, being pregnant, and being over the age of 60. A person's risk for deep vein thrombosis increases if he or she has several risk factors at the same time.
Although the cause of DVT (deep vein thrombosis) is not known, research has shown that people with certain risk factors are more likely than others to develop the condition. A risk factor is anything that increases a person's chance of developing a disease.
Identified DVT risk factors include:
- An inherited condition that causes increased risk for clotting
- Low blood flow in a deep vein due to injury, surgery, or immobilization
- Cancer and its treatment
- Other medical conditions, such as varicose veins
- Sitting for a long time, such as long trips in a car or on an airplane (see DVT and Travel)
- Pregnancy, especially the first six weeks after giving birth
- Being over age 60 (although deep vein thrombosis can occur in any age group)
- Being overweight
- Taking birth control pills or hormone therapy, including those for postmenopausal symptoms
- Having a medical condition that requires a tube be placed in a vein to allow easy access to the bloodstream for medical treatment (central venous catheter).
Generally, your chances of developing DVT will increase if you have several risk factors at the same time.