Deep vein thrombosis (DVT) is a frightening condition where blood unexpectedly pools or clots in the body’s network of large veins. If left untreated, these blood clots can travel to the lungs, where they may block major arteries and cause a fatal pulmonary embolism.
In Australia, information about how many people are affected by DVT is scarce because many people who have the condition don’t even know about it.
If you suffer from DVT, you may be worried that the risks associated with your condition as well as the regular treatment and testing you have to undertake could potentially jeopardise your chances of getting life insurance.
Fortunately, with the help of Special Risk Managers, you can often obtain life insurance and income protection coverage if your condition is well controlled. Our insurance advisers are highly familiar with the special risk insurance market and are always on hand to help people who have pre-existing medical conditions like DVT find a policy that meets their specific needs.
What Causes Deep Vein Thrombosis?
Deep vein thrombosis is a result of blood’s natural tendency to clot when we are cut or injured. Normally, our blood clots so that a wound can heal faster and the body doesn’t bleed too much when we sustain an injury.
In some people, however, this useful mechanism can occur without warrant or warning, forming a potentially dangerous thrombus (blood clot) in a vein that’s deep within the body.
Sometimes a deep vein thrombus occurs because the leg muscles that are supposed to help push blood from the lower extremities back up towards the heart and lungs are immobile for extended periods of time.
This risk of getting DVT from a lack of movement is why doctors warn patients to stretch, get up, and walk around when they are travelling on long flights or recovering in bed from an illness or surgery.
Symptoms of Deep Vein Thrombosis
Diagnosing deep vein thrombosis is not always easy because its symptoms can be mistaken for those of other common circulatory and venular conditions.
Multiple tests are often required before the specific cause of symptoms can be determined.
Common symptoms of DVT include:
– Pain and tenderness in one or both legs
– Pain when moving feet
– Swelling of the lower leg, ankle and foot
– Reddening of the skin
– A heightened temperature around the swollen or red area of skin
Who Does Deep Vein Thrombosis Affect?
Some people are more at risk of developing deep vein thrombosis than others. According to Better Health Victoria, those most at risk are:
– People with a personal or family history of circulatory system conditions
– Overweight or obese individuals
– Pregnant women
– Women using a high-dose oral contraceptive pill
– People with extremely sedentary lifestyles
– Some cancer patients
– People who have recently undergone surgery
– People who have been injured recently
– Individuals undergoing hormone therapy and;
– People who have coronary heart disease
Even if you do not have any of these risk factors, it is still possible to develop deep vein thrombosis for no apparent reason.
The unpredictability of this condition makes it all the more important to protect yourself and your family from the financial impacts of a serious medical incident by taking out life insurance coverage.
Deep Vein Thrombosis Prognosis and Risk Management
The symptoms of deep vein thrombosis can usually be managed through patient regimes that reduce recurrent risk factors such as smoking or obesity.
DVT management programs often include changes to a sufferer’s diet and exercise regimes, taking anticoagulation medication and having regular blood tests to monitor levels of blood coagulability.
In some cases, even with a management program in place, suffers may unexpectedly require urgent medical action. This could mean hospitalisation, immediate injection of medication to dissolve clots or, in extreme circumstances, emergency surgery.
It is important to seek treatment for DVT because without proper management, deep vein thrombosis can lead to the onset of further health problems within your circulatory system.
These could include:
Pulmonary Embolism: This happens when the clot leaves the deep vein it originated in and travels through the circulatory system until it blocks a main artery to the lungs or another major organ. 1 out of 3 incidents of pulmonary embolism are potentially fatal and require emergency lifesaving procedures.
Inflammation (phlebitis): Veins surrounding a blood clot experience increased stress because they have to carry the load of the malfunctioning vein. This pressure can cause surrounding veins to swell, resulting in severe pain to the patient and substantially increasing the chances of developing the aforementioned pulmonary embolism.
Ulceration: Once the deep veins weaken, blood is more likely to be squeezed into the superficial veins (those closer to the exterior skin lining). The resulting dilation and pressure on smaller veins can cause ulcers to develop.
Getting Life Insurance and Income Proteciton Cover with Deep Vein Thrombosis
Because deep vein thrombosis is often an unpredictable condition that requires ongoing treatment and testing, sufferers can find it difficult to find insurers offering them suitable life insurance coverage.
If you have a medical history of circulatory conditions such as deep vein thrombosis, Special Risk Managers have extensive industry knowledge and a large network of insurance providers which they can call upon to help you get a life insurance policy.
Our agents specialise in obtaining policies for clients who have been previously declined because they have special medical conditions that many insurance companies typically avoid.
Whether you’re looking for advice on which insurance products will provide the most appropriate protection for your case, or you just want to talk about how to go about applying for cover, our advisors will help you take the next step forward.
Just call us on 1300 66 53 56 to talk to one of our insurance specialists or send your enquiry to firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.