How can we prevent blood clots in children?
Research shows blood thinners can safely prevent blood clots in many adults who need hospital care, or after recent joint replacement surgery. We give a lower and less frequent dose of blood thinners to prevent clots in adults than we use to treat blood clots.
Research in children will help us understand safe and effective ways to prevent blood clots in children who face an increased risk of blood clots.
Pediatric hematologists, primary care doctors, nurses, and physician assistants can still offer helpful general advice about blood clot prevention in children. All children—especially those with prior blood clots or family members who had blood clots before age 50–should take steps to prevent clots.
Your child should stay hydrated and drink plenty of fluids without caffeine in them.
Your child should avoid smoking, exercise on a regular basis and maintain a healthy weight.
Teenage girls and young women with prior blood clots, or with family members who had blood clots before age 50, should avoid estrogen-containing pills, patches, and rings.
You and your child should discuss other ways to prevent blood clots with your child’s doctor, based on your child’s own health.
Neil A. Goldenberg, MD, PhD
Associate Professor of Pediatrics and Medicine, Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine,
Baltimore, MD, USA
Chief Research Officer and Director, Thrombosis Program,
All Children’s Hospital Johns Hopkins Medicine and All Children’s Research Institute,
St. Petersburg, FL, USA