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Bleeding and Clotting Disorders

Recovering from DVT/PE

08/14/2007

Question:

I was diagnosed and treated for a bilateral PE last week. I am told that I have a clot below and behind my left knee. My work requires that I travel via car 4-6 hours per day. How soon do most patients start walking and moving around? Also, how long does it normally take for the leg pain and swelling to go away? Thank you!

Answer:

The length of time for the pain and swelling can be variable and can be days to sometimes even weeks. Regarding the activity and driving, typically we encourage a relatively quick return to full activity, assuming that the patient is on anticoagulation therapy and they are in the desired therapeutic range. The car travel should be fine, assuming the anticoagulation is at a therapeutic level, and also that you get out every 60-90 minutes and move around out of the car to help with the venous return.

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Response by:

Spero R Cataland, MD Spero R Cataland, MD
Associate Professor of Clinical Internal Medicine
College of Medicine
The Ohio State University