Deion Sanders Lost Two Toes and Almost His Leg to Blood Clots

Pro Football Hall of Famer, Deion Sanders, before his recent blood clots

Deion Sanders Lost Two Toes and Almost His Leg to Blood Clots

This week, Hall of Fame cornerback and Jackson State football coach, Deion Sanders, revealed in a teaser video for his web series “Coach Prime,” that surgeons amputated the big toe and second toe on his left foot after he was hospitalized for blood clots that developed following a previous operation.

More specifically, Sanders developed a femoral arterial blood clot and experienced compartment syndrome. In total, Sanders had eight surgical procedures and spent 23 days in a Mississippi hospital, most of them in the ICU. He lost 40 pounds during the ordeal and after his discharge spent the later part of the 2021 season in a wheelchair.

According to the Associated Press, doctors initially feared that he might lose his leg. In the video, Sanders stated he was willing to do anything to keep his leg.

His blood clot diagnosis led to the revelation that his family has a history of blood clots, which is a powerful risk factor for developing blood clots. And an individual who has a family history of clots may have inherited a thrombophilia.

“It’s been a long journey. I am on the road back,” Sanders said, per USA Today. “But I am here and I am thankful.”

NBCA and the entire Stop the Clot® community extend our well wishes and gratitude to Deion Sanders for speaking out about his blood clot ordeal and using his platform to help bring much needed awareness to this public health crisis.

To help prevent blood clots, it’s important to understand the risk factors for blood clots and also the signs and symptoms of blood clots. Blood clots can be prevented and, when they do occur, they can be safely treated. It’s important to share this information with your friends and family too, so you can help get the word out about life-threatening blood clots.

Blood clots do not discriminate. They can affect anyone, regardless of age, ethnicity, or race.  And, if you think other athletes are immune, think again. For example, NBCA Ambassador and three-time Olympic Medalist, Katie Hoff. Read about some pro hockey players also affected by blood clots: Hockey players and blood clots. Pro baseball players also are on this list too, with a good number of MLB players having experienced blood clots. Read more here: Baseball players and blood clots. And basketball players too. In fact, blood clots ended the career of NBA super star, Chris Bosh. Read more here: Basketball players and blood clots

To read about the many other people affected by blood clots, or to share your own personal story, click here: Patient Stories.

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