Public Release: 

Harry: The wizard of DVT

Patients benefit from blood clot research

Research Australia

Australian traveller's will likely be a part of the study under auspicious of the World Health Organisation to identify ways to minimise the risk of Deep Vein Thrombosis (DVT, a blood clot deep in the vein usually the leg) during long haul flights.

The study plans to involve 30,000 people worldwide and will contribute to significant advances in understanding travel related DVT and its prevention.

Professor Harry Büller from the Academic Medical Center in Amsterdam together with Professor Frits Rosendaal from the University Hospital in Leiden, will set up this study in collaboration with many scientists, including colleagues from Australia.

DVT is just one form of blood clot, pulmonary embolism is another, being a clot dislodged to the lung. Blood clots affect 2-4 in 1000 people each year. Blood clots can be caused by immobilisation from long flights and after surgery; chemo/radiotheraphy; giving birth; and from oestrogen contained in birth control pills.

"We already have made important advances in the diagnosis and treatment of DVT and other types of blood clots. Blood clots can now be diagnosed within 3 hours by non invasive testing. Invasive and rigorous testing are a thing of the past", Professor Büller said.

Over the past decade, Professor Büller has seen a major shift in the treatment of patients diagnosed with blood clots. Approximately 90% of patients can be treated outside of hospital due to the advancement of simple self administering modes of drug delivery rather than 10-14 day hospital stays where treatment was administered intravenously.

The five day meeting will discuss a range of topics concerning etiology, diagnosis, treatment and prevention of blood clots, including new anti clotting agents.


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