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Factor II

I Had to Figure Everything Out on My Own: Sue’s Story

In the spring of 2018, I began having severe shortness of breath. I’m an asthmatic and was using a rescue inhaler constantly, but it didn’t help much. After about six weeks of complaining to my healthcare providers, they did a chest x-ray that was normal. Two weeks later, I was back in the office with…

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I Knew Nothing About Blood Clots: Shawna’s Story

During Covid, I was teaching from home and not as active as I once was. I began feeling short of breath at the start of the week, but attributed it to the bad air quality from fires in the area. On Thursday evening, I began feeling a pain in the right side of my back…

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There’s A Reason I’m Still Here: Barbara’s Story

I am a 2x pulmonary embolism survivor. My first one was in July 2013. I had traveled out of the country, come home, and traveled for my daughter’s soccer games. I was on birth control and overweight. We got home from a weekend tournament, and when I went to stand up, it felt like I…

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Life is a Gift and it’s Fragile: Cara’s Story

I was in my early 30s and enjoying life as a new mom, but I had been having a rough time for nine weeks, experiencing severe headaches and aphasia. I was worked up by a neurologist thoroughly and had all kinds of tests and scans — an MRI, MRA, an EEG — and everything was…

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Listen to Your Intuition, Manage Fear, and Advocate For Yourself: Julie’s Story

In October 2023, I had just returned from a Florida vacation. The following day, I woke up with a subtle ache in my left calf. When I shared with my husband, he casually said, “Do you have a blood clot?” But after years of international flights with no issues, it was easy to attribute the…

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Blood Clots Kicked Me When I Was Already Down: James’ Story

I woke up one morning in the summer of 2011 with nausea and pain in the left side of my torso/abdomen. At first, I wrote it off as a stomach bug and called in sick at work. After a couple of days, I was feeling worse so went to an urgent care clinic. The doctor…

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If I Had Waited One More Day, I Wouldn’t Be Here: Heather’s Story

Last March, I had turned 35 exactly a week before my traumatic discovery. I had a terrible, terrible, headache. I knew that after a few days of having this head pain, something wasn’t right. I was flown out of my local emergency room to a stroke center, where I was told I had two brain…

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The ER Doctor Immediately Assumed I Was Having a Panic Attack: Amy’s Story

One day I was hanging clothes on our clothesline outside. I bent down and suddenly felt really short of breath. After that, I was fine, but then experienced it again when walking or doing anything strenuous. Living in the South, I thought it must be seasonal allergies, but it continued to worsen. When I took…

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I Had Risk Factors I Didn’t Even Realize: Carley’s Story

During my senior year at Clarion University of Pennsylvania, I started getting sick. For about two months, my heart rate would randomly start going really high for no reason. I would wake up in the middle of the night and it would be at 160 beats per minute. I went to the doctor, and they…

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I Got Extremely Lucky: Kelly’s Story

On Halloween 2021, I noticed that my thigh was sore and I was out of breath. I figured it was just a pulled muscle and allergies or a cold coming on. Walking into work the next morning, I was so out of breath that I fainted. I had fainted in the past, so I just…

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