Do You Know What Is Deep Vein Thrombosis?
Let me tell you the story non medically!
He became what he is today at the age of 16, on a surly overcast day around Deewali. I remember the moment, twitching the sweaty palms behind the green drape, peeking into the room where he lay vertically on the stretcher. He is my son and recently diagnosed with acute DVT.
I’ve learned, about how you can ignore the painful moments of past. But past has always clawed it’s way to my subconscious brain. Paradoxically, subconscious has more power tracking the memories and emotions. Every time the emotional moment overpowers my cerebrum, my lungs ache for oxygen!
It’s darn victimizing.
And I am done with it. So to lift off the weight of past emotions, I am writing the story of a young boy-my son-who impulsively strategized to outwit bloody DVT. Stories have known effect of killing the pain.
Now coming from non medical space, I have decided to write the human side of DVT, and it’s effects on life. As this article isn’t meant to show the trajectory of treatment, but to show that life happens when we as humans are busy doing other unimportant things.
To bring clarity in layman language, DVT is an abbreviation for Deep Venous thrombosis. It is a pathological condition in which blood clots in deep veins mostly in the legs and pelvic area. Sometimes completely immobilizing the person, often partly.
Simply put, the blood has the tendency to coagulate, probably genetically. It is not life threatening but if the clots travel to lungs it may result in life threat called Pulmonary Embolism. Again a condition when the blood clots gets lodged in the lungs, and choke the lungs off the oxygen.
Suddenly one day, coming back from school my son complaint severe pain in his abdomen. The gastroenterologist asked for an immediate appendectomy. It all happened in a span of a day. Yet we told the doctor about my story of surviving DVT.
In medical facility there’s a prevalent fact about the inheritance of DVT. If any one of the parent or blood line has DVT, than there are chances to get DVT, and if someone undergoes a minimal invasive surgery like Appendectomy, the chances escalates. Unknown to the medical fact I informed the surgeon about my DVT.
Next day, after 20 hours of surgery, the nursing staff asked my son to walk on his legs so that his legs doesn’t stiffens. Standing on his legs was excruciating. We blamed the weakness out of surgery.
But little did we knew that the we had entered some kind of life bending game. A week after the discharge from the hospital was agonizing, seeing our young boy yell out of chest pain. Never in 16 years had we seen him this vulnerable and small.
Each day rose with a new challenge. We ran pillar to post just to rule out where was the pain stemming from. All the fake reports from pneumonia to typhoid gave us a sense of relief that these were petty illnesses and infections cured soon.
I remember him telling me on that day, “Mum it’s unbearable! It seems like someone’s punched all the air out of my lungs”. And we rushed to another pulmonologist, probably a thousandth time in that week, but one last time to rule out mysterious pain.
At this point, let me tell one another layer of this story. A layer if remain untold will give an inadequate understanding of my son’s brilliant rage converted into self healing.
My son is a national basket ball player, and when his mysterious chest and leg pain restricted his movement, he had his first selection for the international camp. Helpless with unknown rage, I could feel pain rising from his ankle and shin.
Comin back, we went for chest imaging which showed something suffocating the ways of the arteries in the lungs.
And I eavesdropped a doctor saying, “Isn’t it DVT and…”
“And what? PE?” I interrupted.
My head spun because my brain could imply the meaning of what I spoke.
The treatment started with anti coagulant injections. But the erratic part came on third day when due to swelling the nurse couldn’t insert the urine catheter on the opening of the penis, which eventually bruised inside of his penis. Blood spilled out in the bag like pomegranate juice. He tightened his fist in pain and anger, because the nurse was a trainee, learning to insert, and failed badly thrice.
His lips turned to leather, and eyes couldn’t house tears anymore. His penis turned into red lump of mass.
It was a series of agonies, when another day a doctor told us that his kidneys has stopped functioning. I remember my husband collapsing on chair out of sudden hammered revelation. Fortunately with his burning will to overcome the DVT, he managed it.
I know there is much of woes and helpless pain in CoVid era, but pre CoVid times were different. Seeing your healthy, athlete son falling prey to a folly of medical totem, and suffering the loss of passion, was miserable now and then.
But he could endure it for two reasons, his basket ball nationals and his CVTS, a doctor with silver framed glasses and golden heart. Who literally has become a family to us now.
However I marvel the relentless grit of my son. Despite of strict immobility and smashing pain in pelvis and swollen calves and sick lungs, he dared to dream. A dream that he had the vision to accomplish.
After almost four years, he has outgrown all the fears of devilish DVT, he plays basket ball religiously.
He says that Basket Ball is the driving force for him to get back on his legs. His calf still swells when he finishes his rigorous practice, but he says “happens Ma”. He is on anti coagulant Rivaroxaban, that keeps his blood from clotting.
He is no self styled motivator, but a young boy full of life and energy.
Who wants to date life and enjoy all the fun of this dating.