Thrombosis: Major Contributor To Global Disease Burden, High Mortality
As Nigeria commemorates the World Thrombosis Day which comes up on 13th of October every year, a research study shows that thirty – two countries in Europe and fifty percent of patients in surgical ward , thirty percent in medical wards are at risk of having thrombosis.
A similar study which was replicated in fourteen African countries including Nigeria gave the same result.
However, less than twenty percent of the African patients had diagnosis of thrombosis risk while only a fraction of them got correct thrombosis prophylaxis.
Thrombosis is a deadly condition caused by the formation of potentially deadly clot.It is blood that has turned into solid form within the blood vessel.
When the blood clot forms in the vein, which is referred to as ” Deep Vein Thrombosis, ” DTV, part or whole of the clot can detach and travel in the circulation to lodge in he lungs, causing a condition called ” Pulmonary Embolism” PE.
Both DVT and PE are collectively referred to as ” Venous Thromboembolism” VTE.
Explaining the danger of VTE, a Professor, Hematology and Blood Transfusion, College of Medicine, University of Lagos, Professor Sulaimon Akanmu, noted that patients with such condition most times die before specialists could get to them.
“While the number of deaths from Nigeria could not be ascertained, thrombosis is responsible for three hundred and seventy thousand deaths in Europe, a number higher than HIV/AIDs, breast cancer, prostate cancer and traffic accident put together.”
Medical experts say that,thrombosis is responsible for one in four deaths and it remains a leading cause of mortality in the world and wants healthcare practitioners to always subject anyone on admission to thrombosis risk to avoid dying from a preventing death.
On the signs and symptoms of thrombosis, Professor Akanmu says, they are not different from what other conditions present, but, it include, shortness of breath, lightheadedness, swollen leg, discolouration of the leg and warmth.
“The good news about VTE is that most of the cases are preventable. Efforts should be channeled towards prevention through VTE risk assessment for all in – hospital patients and offering appropriate prophylaxis to patients at high risk of VTE who do not have any contraindication to anticoagulation”.
A General Manager of a leading Pharmaceutical Company in charge of Nigeria and Ghana, Ms Folake Odediran, who believed that people were not aware of the ailment said her company had embarked on awareness campaign to address VTE challenge as part of its corporate social responsibility.
“My company is partnering with major health institutions in the country to help improve the care of hospitalised patients and reduce their risk of a VTE.”.
The Health Experts are of the opinion that educational programmes, vigorous discussions and awareness should take the center stage in the media in order to address the problem.