Release Date: 3/31/2011
Man returns to active lifestyle after removal of blood clot
Michael Nelson, 38, recently underwent ultrasound-assisted thrombolysis at St. Anthony's Medical Center, to dissolve a blood clot that formed deep inside a vein in his leg. The procedure allowed Nelson to return to his active lifestyle.
Michael Nelson, 38, had an active lifestyle (loves to hike) and was engaged in an active career field (investigations and security). A downturn in the economy had him looking for a temporary job at Lake of the Ozarks, to hold him over until business picked up.
He found work in a call center, where he sat in a frame chair for seven to eight hours straight, taking call after call. His lunch break came at sporadic times and he had no opportunity to move around.
After working a Saturday shift last November, his right leg started bothering him. “It felt like I had pulled a muscle,” Nelson said. “By Sunday it was worse – I could hardly walk; and by Monday morning it had swollen to about one-and-a-half times its normal size.”
Nelson had an ultrasound at his local Emergency Department, which showed he had deep vein thrombosis (DVT) – a blood clot in a deep vein, almost completely blocking the blood flow from his calf into his pelvic region. He was given a blood thinning medication, compression stockings and a directive to keep his leg elevated.
Restless due to his forced inactivity, Nelson researched his condition on the Internet. He discovered that DVT could produce serious repercussions that could permanently affect his life. A piece of the blood clot could break away and lodge in his heart or lung, possibly causing organ damage or even death. If the clot stayed in his leg for too long, he could develop post thrombotic syndrome, resulting in permanent debilitating damage in the affected vein and a deteriorated quality of life.
He read that the Society of Interventional Radiology recommended removal of the offending clot. He also read that Dr. Mazen AbuAwad, interventional radiologist at St. Anthony’s Medical Center, was one of the specialists who could help him.
Nelson called Dr. AbuAwad, explained his situation and was directed to come in – soon. “It was nice to talk to a doctor who was obviously concerned about my condition,” Nelson said. “I was very impressed with the professionalism, as well as the care and concern, from everyone in the Interventional Radiology Department at St. Anthony’s. I was admitted the day of my appointment, and Dr. AbuAwad performed an ultrasound-assisted thrombolysis right away.”
The procedure took place Dec. 2; and today Nelson, while still on anti-coagulants for a few more months, is back to his active routine. He moved back to St. Louis (Maryland Heights) and is back to work as an investigator.
“I am very, very happy with what they did for me – allowing me to resume an active lifestyle and continue to pursue my career in law enforcement and investigations,” Nelson said. “Everyone at St. Anthony’s was outstanding. It was the most positive experience I’ve ever had in a hospital.”
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