On Nov. 17, 2021, I had a right knee arthroscopy, an outpatient procedure that only took only 15 minutes. I was told I would be back walking in two to three weeks. However, my healing time would be severely prolonged.
Two days after my procedure, I began having a painful charley horse in my right calf muscle. A day after the pain began, I started to see discoloration and swelling in my leg. I went into the ER and had an ultrasound, which showed that I had a blood clot, or deep vein thrombosis, in my right tibial vein, which is in the shin area.
I was sent home on rivaroxaban. A day later, I began to have pain, weakness, and swelling in my left arm. My face was also tingling and I knew something wasn’t right. I went back to ER and was told that I seemed fine and I should just go home. I refused and said, “No, please check!”
The hospital then performed an ultrasound on my upper left extremity and discovered a second clot within my left internal jugular. The doctor who almost sent me home was very apologetic and told me I needed to be admitted immediately and put on a heparin drip. I soon found out that if had I listened to her initial suggestion, I could have gone home and died that night.
They were shocked that I had two clots at the same time, with one being in a dangerous and rare location given my age. I’ve been told by many doctors that my situation shouldn’t have happened from a 15-minute procedure, but it did.
In 2023, after many hospital visits, genetic testing, heart ECHOs, brain and CT scans, and MRIs, the cause is still unknown and considered unprovoked. The clot in my tibial vein dissolved, but the DVT in my left internal jugular is chronic and still present. I am now on blood thinners indefinitely.
This situation changed my life, as I was super healthy before this. I was a personal trainer and nutrition coach for seven years. However, I now see health in a new way. I achieved my Master’s Degree in Health Promotion so I can help bring a change to our community.