Is it normal to have pain 5 months after pulmanory embolisms?

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I was diagnosed with bilateral pulmanory embolisms (in both lungs) in November 2019. The doctor believed it was caused by my birth control pills (Yaz). I was in hospital for a week, stopped taking the birth control pills immediately and I'm on Pradaxa (anticoagulant) for 6 months. My doctor did not five me a lot of information (what to expect, recovery periods, etc.).

Although I was diagnosed with pulmanory embolisms on both lungs, I only had pain on my left lung. 4 months down the line I started having a slight pain on my left lung again (same place where I experienced the pain), more of a discomfort about once a week. Not sure whether I should be worried, see a GP or see my specialist....

Now 5 months down the line, I'm experiencing slight pain/discomfort in my right lung. (Note I've never had any pain in my right lung). I've read numerous articles stating that it's "normal" to experience pain and that the blood clots may never fully dissolve.

I would like to get opinions.... Should I see a doctor, am I ok, is it normal, should I be worried.....

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  • Edited

    hi there , i had bilateral pulmonary embolisms 4 years ago and am on blood thinners for life now . I did have pains for quite a while due to the damage the clots did to my lungs .

    I would say if its painful get it checked out , embolisms are not likely to happen again on thinners but its more to be safe in your own mind that nothing is happening .

    All the best , you do what you feel is best , I had one wobble after 3 or 4 months and i went back to get checked and it all was fine.

    you should have a review with someone after a few months to see how your lungs are etc . You may have to push for this as i did and it came through after about 7 months


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    • Edited

      Thank you. I was wondering... The doctors said nothing about follow ups, or doing any tests again. I will definitely have my lungs checked once I'm done with the 6 month treatment of blood thinners. How do they establish how long one should be on blood thinners?

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  • Edited

    It is always best to check with a doctor, as members on here are not qualified. However, it may not need a face to face visit, just a call to confirm.

    I had exactly the same as you (minus the birth control, as I'm a guy..). Pain afterwards is very common and can happen without identifiable cause. Can also be triggered by many airborne contaminants (diesel, petrol, glue, smoke etc. ). I had my PEs 5 years ago and still get pain. Not bad pain and it passes fairly quickly most of the time. I mostly get the pain in one lung, at the site where I had massive pain originally. Occasionally (like yesterday) it is in the other lung, in an area where I didn't have pain originally. Weird...but that's what happens. A year ago (4 years after the clots) a CT scan confirmed all the clots had gone. The pulmonologist said there was some damage, but the lungs weren't bad for an old bloke 😃

    I would suggest a chat with the GP who can refer you if you have concerns.....and not to worry unduly.

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  • Edited

    hi sami,

    your not alone!

    I too suffered a bilateral PE. unprovoked. I was prescribed apixaban but I actually developed more PE's. Ive had 6 PE's in total over the passed year.

    Yip, I know exactly the kind of pain your describing!! I still experience these pains. If your ever worried ALWAYS contact your doctor! its good to keep in mind that anticoagulants do not dissolve or remove clots! They keep your blood thin to prevent further clotting. So bare in mind your lungs are working harder than usual, scarring is common from blood clots.

    when I experience these pains, i focus on my breathing, deep breaths (exercises you would have been given from your respiratory physio) check your pulse, if your heart rate is higher than usual then contact your doc!

    im no doctor, im only speaking from my own experience.

    we are hear for you too!

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    • Posted

      Thank you for your input. 6 PEs???? Wow glad your doing well/better. I've been so busy with work post PE that I've not had chance to exercise or get to the biokinetics. I feel so bad about it. Even now during lockdown I'm struggling to make time for some light exercises... I'm still drowning in work. I have to start putting my health first.

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  • Edited

    I had pain for a good two years or so after my PE. It gets better over time, and some never really goes away.

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  • Edited

    I got multiple PEs from a birth control pill too I had more pain in my right lung and it comes and goes even 2 years later. I am now clot free and haven't had to go back on blood thinners but I do still get a bit of pain in my right lung. You should have had an appointment with someone to see how you are getting on with your anticoagulants, even if it is a telephone appointment. Yaz is another name for yasmin one of the pills I was given for my PCOS symptoms as well as dianette, both are in the risky category for clots. I was told if the clots came from the contraceptive pill and you complete your course of anticoagulant and never take the pill again or HRT or any oestrogen hormone related medication in the future you should be ok. Obviously if you become pregnant your risk goes up though. You do still have to be careful though, I asked for a lot of d-dimer blood tests the first year after I came off the anticoagulants because I still had a few symptoms with chest pain, breathing problems and palpitations. I was also told as the blood clots dissolve you will experience pain.

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