Dr. Joseph M. Perlman Advanced Plastic Surgery Centre

A new study revealed that leading a sedentary lifestyle can also lead to the development of blood clots in the lungs, the British Medical Journal reported. The study targets women in particular, which stated that women who don’t engage in any physical activity are at least twice as likely to develop a pulmonary embolism.

Pulmonary embolism is a resulting complication when a blood clot is severed from its place and travels through the bloodstream and into the lungs. This can result in difficulty breathing and chest pains. If left unattended, pulmonary embolism can be a potentially lethal condition. Prompt diagnosis and therapy should be undertaken to avert recurrent embolism or death.

Led by Dr. Christopher Kabrhel, the researchers looked into the lifestyle habits of about 69,000 nurses. After taking into account the test subjects’ age, smoking habits, body mass index, and physical activities, the researchers discovered that pulmonary embolism is likely for those who spend most of their time sitting.

The research also revealed the link between physical inactivity and various health problems such as heart disease and hypertension as well as arterial and venous diseases. In light of this discovery, Dr. Kabrhel encouraged everyone, especially women, to stand up and exercise or engage in any physical activity to reduce the risk of pulmonary embolism.

An accompanying editorial in the journal also stated that physical inactivity accounts for the risk of developing venous thromboembolism—a condition that involves the formation of blood clots in the veins. Most clinical events of venous thromboembolism take place in the legs or lungs.