PE and working 12 hour shifts

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I was diagnosed with a PE this past Monday night. I honestly never seen it coming. I had woke up about a week earlier with a super sore and sensitive calf. But just blew it off to a pulled muscle or something. I am 37 and a blood clot just never crossed my mind. A week later, I find out I have a PE in my left lung. I find myself wondering if my job is going to be ok with this medical condition. I am a surgical scrub technician. I work 12 hour shifts on my in often very high stress. I wondered if anyone had any knowledge they could share to help me out? Thank you. 

0 likes, 7 replies

7 Replies

  • Posted

    Afraid I can’t help very much - just wanted to say that I was recently discharged after a submassive bilateral PE and when I told my consultant I was just about to embark on training to be an ODP she was absolutely adamant that I continue with it. Are there any adjustments that your employer can make whilst you recover?  
    • Posted

      I haven’t talked to my employer yet. I wanted to have an idea of things before talking to her. I meet with a Dr on Mon and should have a better idea of what he plans. I just don’t know what to think. I feel frustrated with the whole situation. 
  • Posted

    I work 12 hour shifts too. I'm a Health Unit Coordinator on a psychiatric unit. High stress job too. Not on my feet all day like your job. But, I remember to get up out of my chair EVEY hour and stretch my legs now. Get up on my toes a few times. Get my blood circulation going. One of my Nurse Practitioner's ,on my unit, told me it's like flying non stop 12 hours without moving. My type of PE was unprovoked, no genetic factors. We thought it was asthma but it didn't respond to steroids. I'm working full time again. Feeling healthy again. At the end of this March 2018 it will be 6 month since my PE and I get off the Coumadin. A little nervous about that. When I catch a "cold" some of the pulmonary hypertension I now have i feel. On Facebook there are some support groups too that I found so helpful early in my diagnosis. Hope this helps you.....

    • Posted

      I was off work about 8 weeks because problems breathing. Took me about 4 months after the PE not to be short of breath walking across a room. Thankful for FMLA and my employer willing to work with me.
  • Posted

    I had small bilateral pes in November of 2016. Did six months of liquid. Been off blood thinners since may 2017 so far no problems. Not sure where mine came from maybe from one of my alters kicking a door. Did not have a dvt. Woke up in the middle of the night last night though with a crazy painful Charlie horse where I couldn't flex my leg or foot hope it's not a clot. But I went back to work 6 months after and I've no problems ever since. The liquid gave me a lot of pain that's why I was out so long.

  • Posted


    ?That's exactly what had happened to me but I had lots of clots in both lungs. They suggest a couple of days rest and then return back to normal routine, but this depends on the severity of the clot(s) Breathlessness is a big issue with PE's so you will have to take that into consideration with your job and discuss with seniors. Your body will tell you when to take it slower or rest completely.

    ?The medical professionals know that PE's are or can be dangerous, yet once they put you on blood thinners they are of the opinion you are fixed and ready to go, not always so, as I said your body will let you know what you can and can't do during recuperation. 

  • Posted

    Hello Amanda. Pulmonary embolism is caused by blood clots that travel to the lungs from the legs (deep vein thrombosis (DVT) and in rare occasion other part of the body. If doctors can’t find where the blood clots came from they call this an unprovoked situation. Usually, they recommend 3 to 6 months of anticoagulants treatment and for unprovoked it could lifelong blood thinner treatment.

    My PE happened in January and since then I’m back to 100%. At first, I was misdiagnosed with pneumonia. However, the symptoms didn’t add up and I ended back in the ER. After a 3 day stay in the hospital I was discharged with a diagnosed of unprovoked bilateral PE. I got a second opinion and was told it could have been caused by a condition that was passing through my body called Kikuchi-Fujimoto disease (had a biopsy on swollen lymph nodes). This was a more favorable outcome since I’m a Navy pilot and can’t be on anticoagulant while flying (there are waivers for civilian pilots, just not the military). It took me about a week from the episode before I was back running and in the gym.

    I got a few blood tests done to rule out if I had any inherited disorder (all came back good). Additionally, I got an ultrasound of my legs to see if there are any signs of a clot in my DVT (all good). Thankfully, the PE has not slowed me or affected my job. I’ve been using compression socks that was recommended when working and seating for a long time.

    I hope you get better and stay motivated!!

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