This Experience Changed My Entire Life: Kim’s Story

This Experience Changed My Entire Life: Kim’s Story

In September 2015, I was sitting in the ICU wondering how I had gotten there. Flash back to six months prior, I had severe depression and I weighed close to 300 pounds. I was also training for a 160-mile bike ride from Miami to Key West.

During my training for this ride, I started experiencing chest pain and shortness of breath. I told myself that it was due to my weight and I continued to push through the pain. I told myself that this is what it was like to be 300 pounds.

By mid-September, I was still not feeling well, but I continued to ignore my symptoms and competed in a triathlon. During the swimming segment, I took 10 strokes in the open water and a wave of nausea hit me, then I couldn’t breathe. The lifeguards plunged into the water and pulled me to safety and the paramedics took over. I knew something wasn’t right, but they checked my vitals and said everything was normal before releasing me.

Luckily, the ICU team and the thrombolytic “clot buster” drug saved my life. I found out that I have Factor II (also called Prothrombin G20210A), a blood clotting disorder that my mother was recently diagnosed with as well. Having this blood clotting disorder in my family, being on birth control at the age of 45, and severe dehydration were all risk factors that contributed to my blood clots.

I started going to therapy after this experience and was diagnosed with an eating disorder. This experience changed my entire life and has taught me how to advocate for myself. Luckily, my hematologist referred me to stoptheclot.org where I have learned all about the risk factors for blood clots. For those reading my story, please pay attention to your body!


Factor II

Risk Factors

Sports and Wellness Institute

Women and Blood Clots

Facebook Support Group

Share your story
The personal story is intended for informational purposes only. The National Blood Clot Alliance (NBCA) holds the rights to all content that appears on its website. The use by another organization or online group of any content on NBCA’s website, including patient stories that appear here, does not imply that NBCA is connected to these other organizations or groups or condones or endorses their work. Please contact info@stoptheclot.org with questions about this matter.

Additional patient stories

Marianne Elliott


Don't Wait Until the Last Minute
Ashley Eldridge


This Needed More than a Tylenol Prescription
Janelle Palmer


A Challenging Series of Miscarriages