Understanding Deep Vein Thrombosis or DVT

A Blood Clot within a vein is known as a venous thrombosis, and the most common type of venous thrombosis is a Deep Vein Thrombosis (DVT) in the leg.

If the DVT blocks all of the blood vessel then all of the tissues drained by the vein can become swollen and painful due to the blood being unable to escape. Unfortunately 80% of people with deep vein thrombosis (DVT) may not have any obvious symptoms at all and this is why we recommend gamers take precautions to prevent the condition occurring.

The most common symptoms include pain, tenderness and swelling of the leg, usually in the calf. Sometimes this is accompanied by discoloration where the leg may be pale, blue or a reddish purple colour.

The main risk factors that gamers need to consider are as follow:-

Extended periods of immobility whilst concentrating with online and team games

Being dehydrated

Drinking Alcohol/Coffee before or during gaming (Causes dehydration)

Never drink high energy drinks to keep you awake/alert whilst gaming – they have high caffeine content and will cause severe dehydration

The use of the combined oral contraceptive and hormone replacement therapy


Being either a tall or short person or being overweight

It is very important to know that the risk increases dramatically if any of the above factors are combined, for example:


You are a slightly overweight, tall person, and you have just come in from being out for a drink with your friends, you decide to play on your Xbox 360 and find that you have friends online from America, they are 5 hours behind the UK in a different time zone and a long gaming session gets under way, you are in a team game and despite feeling thirsty and tired you don’t want to let your team mates down and quit, to keep going you drink a couple of cans of Red Bull high energy drink ………

Under these very normal conditions you are ticking all the wrong boxes and you are at serious risk of acquiring a DVT (Deep Vein Thrombosis)

In the UK up to one in every 1000 people are affected by Venous Thrombosis every year, with a population of 61,838,000 that’s a staggering 61,838 or 1189 people every week. A significant amount of those people however have no known pre-existing factors and can develop apparently spontaneous events.

As if acquiring a DVT (Deep Vein Thrombosis) was not bad enough, should the blood clot detach and move its way towards your heart and lungs you at a very serious risk of Death and it is an acute medical emergency.

These Blood clots which detach are often moulded to the shape of the deep vein and eventually lodge in the heart or lung when they become known as a Pulmonary Embolism.

Please take a look at our page – Pulmonary Embolism

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