What are blood clots and what causes them?
When we injure ourselves and start to bleed, our bodies make sure that the bleeding soon stops by forming a clump of blood (a blood clot) that closes the wound. This reaction is very important, because it ensures that we lose as little blood as possible, stops germs from getting into the wound, and allows the wound to heal.
But sometimes blood clots form in the bloodstream even though there are no external injuries, and blood vessels may become blocked as a result. This can lead to dangerous complications such as a or stroke. These kinds of blood clots only occur very rarely in healthy people. But certain illnesses and genetic factors can increase the risk of blood clots forming. Many people who have this higher risk take anti-clotting medication as prevention.