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My husband is a long-distance driver working seven days a week, so he doesn’t get much opportunity to exercise. Recently, his feet and hands have been twitching all night. I know deep vein thrombosis happens when you sit still for a long time – is this his problem?
Deep vein thrombosis, otherwise known as a blood clot in the leg, affects one in 1,000 Britons every year. When we sit still for a long time, the movement of blood from the legs to the heart becomes sluggish.
Blood - Veins - Movement - Leg - Muscles
This is because blood is helped through the veins with the movement of leg muscles. Without the muscles squeezing the veins in the legs, encouraging blood to move, a clot can form.
The worry is that part of the clot can break away and travel to other areas of the body, including the heart and lungs, causing a potentially fatal blockage.
DVTs - Operation - Flight - Illness - Car
DVTs are more likely if you are dehydrated or immobile during an operation, a flight or an illness. Long car journeys only slightly increase risk as there is some movement of the legs and feet. Clots are more common in people with cancer, clotting disorders and those taking certain medications.
In these cases, patients are normally prescribed blood-thinning tablets or stockings to prevent clots.
Weight - Risk - Condition - Obesity - Small
Maintaining a healthy weight will reduce the risk as the condition is associated with obesity. Small leg movements will also reduce risks. Formal exercise isn’t always necessary, rather taking short walks or flexing the ankle.
DVT and twitching at night are not usually related. Repetitive twitching in the legs and arms is known as periodic limb movement disorder (PLMD) and is often related to restless leg syndrome.
Alcohol - Lack - Exercise - Deficiency - Stress
It can be triggered by alcohol, lack of exercise, nutrient deficiency, stress and medicine such as high blood pressure tablets. Massaging the legs or taking a hot bath...
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