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  • 2/13/2012

Sitting in window seats ups DVT risk during long flights

sitting in window seats ups dvt risk during long flights

Flying economy class on a long flight does not increase the risk of potentially dangerous blood clots in the legs known as deep venous thromboses (DVTs).

Experts from the American College of Chest Physicians said that economy class passengers on flights of more than four hours didn’t have a higher risk of DVT than those in business and first class.

The report found no evidence to support the myth of “economy class syndrome”‌ but revealed that sitting next to a window may raise the risk by making passengers less likely to get up and walk around.

“Long-distance travellers sitting in a window seat tend to have limited mobility, which increases their risk for DVT. This risk increases as other factors are present,”‌ said Mark Crowther of McMaster University in Ontario, Canada.

The new gridlines also warned that pregnant women and those taking contraceptive pills, passengers over 70, cancer patients and the severely obese are among those who are at a greater risk of developing DVT.

The risk is also higher for those who had a recent trauma or surgery and travellers who do not or can’t walk around during the flight. The risk is the highest for passengers flying for more than 8 to 10 hours.

Experts reiterated that travellers should take the risk of DVT seriously because it can lead to a rare but potentially fatal blockage in the lung known as pulmonary embolism.

They recommended travellers with an increased risk of blood clots who are on flights six hours or longer to get up and move about frequently.

Stretching the calf muscles, sitting in an aisle seat and wearing below-knee graduated compression stockings are other measures one can take to prevent DVT during a long flight.

Source: presstv.com

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