The seriousness of thrombosis - or blood clots - is often overlooked and misunderstood. A recent global survey showed that only one in 10 people consider blood clots as life threatening as AIDS, breast cancer, prostate cancer or road traffic accidents.* Yet, blood clots kill more than twice as many people each year in Europe alone than all of these combined.(1)
"Reducing deaths from thrombosis is essential to supporting the World Health Assembly's goal of significantly lowering premature deaths from non-infectious disease, including cardiovascular disease, by 25 percent by 2025," said Nigel Key, a haematologist with UNC Health Care and the UNC School of Medicine and Chairman of the International Society on Thrombosis and Haemostasis (ISTH). "With establishment of the annual World Thrombosis Day, we are focused on driving ongoing awareness and education around blood clots to help improve the public’s health and wellbeing worldwide."
"Thrombosis is a life-threatening disease and places a heavy burden on patients, carers, physicians and healthcare systems," said Dr. Joerg Moeller, Member of the Bayer HealthCare Executive Committee and Head of Global Development. "Bayer HealthCare is honoured to be the founding global partner of the ISTH World Thrombosis Day. We believe that a united global effort can drive real change to effectively reduce the number of undiagnosed cases and increase the use of evidence-based advances to help prevent the risk of blood clots worldwide and improve the health of patients, who do suffer from thrombosis."
About World Thrombosis Day
The date of World Thrombosis Day, October 13, was chosen to mark the birthday of Rudolf Virchow, the German physician and pathologist who first devised the term "thrombosis" and was the author of many papers that advanced our understanding of it.
Blood clots can happen to anyone at any age. Therefore it is important to raise awareness and learn about the symptoms and risk factors at WorldThrombosisDay.org. Those at risk or showing symptoms should talk to their doctor and share this information with others.
About the International Society on Thrombosis and Haemostasis (ISTH)
Founded in 1969, the ISTH is the leading worldwide not-for-profit organization dedicated to advancing the understanding, prevention, diagnosis and treatment of thrombotic and bleeding disorders. The ISTH is an international membership organization with nearly 4,000 clinicians, researchers and educators working together to improve the lives of patients in more than 90 countries around the world. Among its highly regarded activities and initiatives are education and standardization programs, research activities, meetings and conferences, peer-reviewed publications and expert committees.
*About the Blood Clot Awareness Survey
ICM Research interviewed a random sample of 20,258 adults aged 18-64 in twenty countries across the world through online interviewing between 17th July - 11th August 2014. Surveys were conducted across each country and the results have been weighted to the profile of all adults. ICM is a member of the British Polling Council and abides by its rules. The survey was conducted by ICM Research on behalf of Bayer HealthCare.
About Venous Arterial Thromboembolism (VAT)
Thrombosis is the formation of a blood clot inside a blood vessel, blocking a vein (venous thrombosis) or artery (arterial thrombosis). Venous Arterial Thromboembolism (VAT) is caused when some or all of a clot detaches and is moved within the blood stream until it obstructs a smaller vessel. This can result in damage to vital organs, because the tissue beyond the blockage no longer receives nutrients and oxygen.
VAT is responsible for a number of serious and life threatening conditions:
- Venous Thromboembolism (VTE) occurs when part of a clot formed in a deep vein, for example in the leg (known as deep vein thrombosis, or DVT), is carried to the lung, via the heart, preventing the uptake of oxygen. This is known as a pulmonary embolism (PE), an event which can be rapidly fatal. Blood clots that obstruct blood flow in deep veins or in the lungs kill one person every 37 seconds in the Western World. Symptoms of DVT include: Pain, swelling, redness of the affected area, and the dilation of surface veins. The skin may also be warm to the touch. Symptoms of PE include: Acute shortness of breath, chest pain and a rapid heart rate; some people may also cough blood.
- Arterial Thromboembolism occurs when oxygenated blood flow from the heart to another part of the body (via an artery) is interrupted by a blood clot. If this occurs in a vessel supplying blood to the brain, it can lead to a stroke, an event that can be severely debilitating or fatal. If it occurs in a coronary artery, it can lead to acute coronary syndrome (ACS), a complication of coronary heart disease which includes conditions such as myocardial infarction and unstable angina.
VAT is responsible for significant morbidity and mortality, and requires active or preventative treatment to avoid potentially serious or fatal patient outcomes.
About Bayer HealthCare
The Bayer Group is a global enterprise with core competencies in the fields of health care, agriculture and high-tech materials. Bayer HealthCare, a subgroup of Bayer AG with annual sales of EUR 18.9 billion (2013), is one of the world's leading, innovative companies in the healthcare and medical products industry and is based in Leverkusen, Germany. The company combines the global activities of the Animal Health, Consumer Care, Medical Care and Pharmaceuticals divisions. Bayer HealthCare's aim is to discover, develop, manufacture and market products that will improve human and animal health worldwide. Bayer HealthCare has a global workforce of 56,000 employees (Dec 31, 2013) and is represented in more than 100 countries.
1. Cohen AT et al. Thromb Haemost. 2007; 98 (4):756-764.