What are the Symptoms of a Blood Clot in the Foot?

Larry Ray Palmer
Larry Ray Palmer
Swelling and discoloration of the foot may be indicative of a blood clot.
Swelling and discoloration of the foot may be indicative of a blood clot.

Blood clots in any part of the body can be dangerous, and a blood clot in the foot is no different. Many people who experience foot swelling, or edema, as well as pain or numbness will not recognize these symptoms of a blood clot. These symptoms and other signs of a problem often go unrecognized until after the blood clot has relocated to another part of the body and has become a life-threatening condition.

If left untreated, a blood clot in the foot could relocate to the heart and cause a heart attack.
If left untreated, a blood clot in the foot could relocate to the heart and cause a heart attack.

In most cases, individuals suffering from a blood clot in the foot will notice that the affected foot is swollen and discolored. Depending on whether the blood clot is blocking the flow of blood going into the foot or out of the foot, the coloration might be purple or red, respectively. The victim might also notice that the veins on the surface of his or her feet appear to be larger than normal. This appearance is commonly referred to as varicose veins.

Blood clots that form in the foot may travel to other parts of the body if untreated.
Blood clots that form in the foot may travel to other parts of the body if untreated.

At this point, the victim might develop numbness in the affected foot, because the blood circulation is effectively blocked by the blood clot. At the other end of the spectrum, the victim also might begin to experience intense pain — which has been described as either a throbbing, persistent ache or a shooting pain — when standing, walking or flexing the foot. This numbness or pain might extend into the leg because the blocked vein deprives the leg of a proper blood supply.

A blood clot, also known as a thrombus, is the result of several blood cells lumping together.
A blood clot, also known as a thrombus, is the result of several blood cells lumping together.

Early detection and resolution of a blood clot in the foot is vital. With proper medical response, clots are treatable, and most individuals who detect them early will make a full recovery. Using blood thinners, such as aspirin or prescription medications, along with special therapies and techniques, medical professionals can usually dissolve a blood clot before it creates a serious threat.

Swelling and numbness are symptoms of a blood clot in the foot.
Swelling and numbness are symptoms of a blood clot in the foot.

Without proper medical attention, a blood clot can easily relocate to the heart, causing a heart attack. It might also break loose and lodge itself in a vein feeding the brain, causing a stroke. Blood clots that are dislodged and arrive in the lungs have equally disastrous potential, because they can result in a pulmonary embolism. These possibly fatal conditions are why prompt response is necessary when dealing with discoloration of the feet, foot and leg pain, numbness or any of the other signs of a blood clot in the foot.

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Discussion Comments

anon1005509

I'm 70 and have neuropathy in both feet. Non diabetic and no BP issues. I got out of bed last Thursday (today being Mon) with my foot and leg asleep. I fell right to the floor. I was twisting the left foot side of my foot. I iced it and monitored it. I can bear weight somewhat, but the pain is worse every day. I can’t even touch the top or side of my foot. I have some discoloration and bruising on the side of my foot.

anon318770

Swollen feet and legs can be a symptom of poor blood circulation in the legs and feet, which results in accumulation of blood in legs and feet, thus leading to higher blood pressure.

Poor blood circulation in legs is often caused by weakening of valves, thus leading to backflow of blood and retention of blood in legs. So, to prevent against swelling of feet and poor blood circulation in legs, use suitable pair of graduated compression socks with the right pressure applied. Excessive pressure causes discomfort while too low a pressure has little or minimal effect.

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    • Swelling and discoloration of the foot may be indicative of a blood clot.
      By: Luis Santos
      Swelling and discoloration of the foot may be indicative of a blood clot.
    • If left untreated, a blood clot in the foot could relocate to the heart and cause a heart attack.
      By: CandyBox Images
      If left untreated, a blood clot in the foot could relocate to the heart and cause a heart attack.
    • Blood clots that form in the foot may travel to other parts of the body if untreated.
      By: ras-slava
      Blood clots that form in the foot may travel to other parts of the body if untreated.
    • A blood clot, also known as a thrombus, is the result of several blood cells lumping together.
      By: clearviewstock
      A blood clot, also known as a thrombus, is the result of several blood cells lumping together.
    • Swelling and numbness are symptoms of a blood clot in the foot.
      By: Mercedes Fittipaldi
      Swelling and numbness are symptoms of a blood clot in the foot.
    • Most arteries carry oxygenated blood, while most veins carry deoxygenated blood.
      By: stockshoppe
      Most arteries carry oxygenated blood, while most veins carry deoxygenated blood.
    • Early detection and resolution of a blood clot in the foot is vital.
      By: p6m5
      Early detection and resolution of a blood clot in the foot is vital.