BENEFITING: National Blood Clot Alliance
ORGANIZER: National Blood Clot Alliance
EVENT DATE: Nov 01, 2015
Five years ago, I was a healthy 27 year old runner who had just finished my fourth half-marathon. A couple weeks after the race, I noticed a nagging pain in my hip. Of course, being a typical runner, I didn’t think too much of it and continued to run through the pain. Well, that “nagging” pain ended up being a stress fracture that required surgery. I was well aware of the risks going into the surgery, but (being young and naïve) never thought they could happen to me.
A week after my surgery, I went to get out of bed and suddenly found it extremely hard to breathe. I had been a little short of breath ever since the surgery, but assumed it was because of my asthma. This felt different though. I could barely catch my breath and found it difficult just to talk. Thankfully, my Mom was with me at the time and able to call 911. I was rushed to the ER and diagnosed with a blood clot in my calf and multiple clots in both of my lungs. I was then airlifted to a larger hospital, where I spent the next 5 days.
To be honest, I’m lucky to have made it to the ER in the first place. I had been walking around with a DVT and Pulmonary Embolisms for close to a week and had no idea. I also cannot express how fortunate I was to have doctors who quickly diagnosed my situation and were able to provide proper treatment. Without them, I probably wouldn’t be here today. I had to be on blood thinners for 7 months and it took me quite a while to get back into running and racing, but I know that I am a stronger person today because of my experience.
When I tell people my story, many are surprised to hear that someone my age suffered from blood clots. A lot of people labor under the assumption that clots only happen to the elderly or people who are out-of-shape. Well, I'm proof that this isn't the case. Throughout the years, I've also discovered that some people have never even heard of Pulmonary Embolisms, which is something I find worrying. The most important step in treating DVTs and PEs is early diagnosis. The mortality rate for an undiagnosed PE is 30% and in some cases the first symptom is death. And there’s also this to consider - on average 274 people die every day from blood clots. I really cannot stress how important it is to know your risks and learn the signs and symptoms of a blood clot.
The National Blood Clot Alliance is an organization that is extremely close to my heart and, obviously, very important to me. On November 1, I'm running the New York City Marathon as part of their Stop the Clot Team. This will be my fourth race since my clots and I’m running it not only for myself, but more importantly for those who weren't as fortunate as me. If I can use this race to spread awareness and to help just one person, then it's all worth it.
Thank you so much for your support and for your donations – it truly means the world to me and together we can all help to STOP THE CLOT!