My Only Risk Factor Was Estrogen: Ann’s Story

My Only Risk Factor Was Estrogen: Ann’s Story

I started having intermittent chest pain in March 2021. I thought it was a sports injury and went to see my primary care provider (PCP). By May of that year, the pain was constant, so my PCP scheduled a CT scan.  

I arrived at the imaging center and they had not received my order. My PCP is in the same building, so I went to pick up a paper order. My PCP came out in the hallway and she noticed that I had shortness of breath, so she said she wanted to check for blood clots too. I did not know what that meant.  

I had the tests done in the late afternoon, then I went to work out. Thirty minutes later, my PCP called and told me to go to the emergency room right away. I was diagnosed with pulmonary embolism and pulmonary infarction. The ER physician told me that I was very lucky.  

My only risk factor was that I was taking estrogen. There are no blood clot resources at the healthcare center I go to, so I have to be my own advocate. NBCA resources have been extremely helpful. 


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