Awareness of DVT is the best way to prevent this condition. Medical professionals have recognised DVT for almost 2 centuries, but until recently, only a small number of people were informed about the disease. Without knowledge of DVT as a medical problem, the public cannot engage healthcare providers to discuss lifestyle changes and more intensive measures that usually succeed in preventing this illness.
Prevention whilst Flying:- This is applicable to all long journeys, and when sitting for long periods at work.
· Do not take excessive alcohol as alcohol can cause dehydration and immobility
· Drink plenty of water to avoid dehydration
· Exercise your calf and foot muscles regularly:
o Every half hour or so, bend and straighten your legs, feet and toes when you are seated.
o Press the balls of your feet down hard against the floor or footrest every so often. This helps to increase the blood flow in your legs
o Take a walk up and down the aisle every hour or so, when the aircraft crew say it is safe to do so.
o If you are allowed, get off the plane and walk about if the plane stops for refuelling.
· Consider wearing compression stockings
o The slight pressure from the stocking helps to prevent blood 'pooling' in the calf. Stockings do not replace the need for regular exercises. They are in addition to exercises.
· Some people at high risk may also be advised to take anticoagulant medication
o If you think you are at high risk, for example
§ With family history
§ Previous DVT or PE
§ Major Surgery in the last three months
§ Have cancer or treatment for cancer I the past
§ Had a stroke
o Contact your doctor before you fly to discuss your risk and options.
Prevention after Surgery:-
· After surgery, get up and moving as quickly as possible.
· If you are unable to get up, flex your ankles and toes.