Author: Märit Jensen, MD
University Medical Center Hamburg-Eppendorf, Hamburg, Germany; Clinical Stroke and Imaging Research (CSI) group
Thrombosis is the formation of a blood clot in a vessel that can affect either the venous or the arterial system. It is the often preventable cause of myocardial infarction, thromboembolic stroke, and venous thromboembolism, including deep vein thrombosis (DVT) and pulmonary embolism. Thrombosis is a major health issue and one in four people are dying from conditions caused by thrombosis.
October 13 was the birthday of Rudolf Virchow who pioneered thrombosis research and treatment. For this reason, World Thrombosis Day has chosen October 13 as the day to draw attention to thrombosis and the prevention and treatment of this potentially life-threatening condition. World Thrombosis Day is an international campaign, founded in 2014 by the International Society on Thrombosis and Haemostasis (ISTH), with the aim to educate the public about thrombosis and to reduce the burden of premature death and disability resulting from clots in the blood vessels. To this end, each year they run a campaign with diverse actions including social media activities, “ask the expert” sessions, webinars, but also public actions like walks and performances against thrombosis.
From a broader perspective, many strokes are also caused by arterial clots in the brain arteries and any activities to inform the public about underlying risk factors as well as preventive measures must be commended. In addition, thrombosis may also play a more specific role in stroke etiology for example in the case of paradoxical embolism due to DVT and patent foramen ovale (PFO). Cerebral venous sinus thrombosis (CVST) is also a frequently underdiagnosed but dangerous condition associated with venous blood clots.
The World Thrombosis Day has had a remarkable impact over the past years reflected by a huge number of global media and influencer impressions. We should take this as an example and join forces in the prevention of non-communicable diseases. October 29 is World Stroke Day – let us move together against thrombosis! Let us move together against stroke!
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