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On January 10 I was admitted to the hospital for observation…

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On January 10 I was...
On January 10 I was admitted to the hospital for observation for mild preeclampsia without severe features and on the 17th had a c-section. The c-section took less than 1 hour, they had those weird compression booties on me for 24 hours, and they had me up and walking around within 12 hours of surgery.A couple weeks later I developed pain in my left calf and was worried about a DVT. I went to the local urgent care in mid-February where they did an ultrasound and saw no clots. A couple weeks later (probably 2 weeks ago at this point) I had a full blood work up for un-related things - the blood work included an d-dimer which was negative. I am now 8.5 weeks postpartum (so all of this has taken place over that time).However I still have the pain in my leg. It’s intermittent. Sometimes it goes all the way down to my foot or up to my upper thigh - sometimes the whole leg, but when I feel it it’s mostly in my calf. I’m also beginning to feel pain in the other calf/leg (same thing: sometimes up to upper thigh, sometimes down to foot - sometimes whole length of the leg). I also feel pain in the front of my leg occasionally.There is no redness, swelling, or warmth. The pain is intermittent. It doesn’t increase when I flex my toes, although both legs feel like they need a really good stretch or massage.With a clear ultrasound about a month ago and normal/negative d-dimer 2 weeks ago should I be worried about a DVT still? I’ve been telling myself it could be any # of things (wearing basically slippers for the last 8 weeks, getting used to holding the baby while walking, sciatica, etc.) but can’t shake the fear of a DVT.
Submitted: 4 months ago.Category: Medical
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Customer reply replied 4 months ago
Oh, I’ve also noticed if I take ibuprofen for something the calf pain seems to also dissipate - not sure if DVT pain would be affected by ibuprofen.The pain also hasn’t gotten worse - it’s the same level of pain. When it’s in my foot or upper thigh/bum it’s kind of sharp feeling, in my calf it feels crampy.
Answered in 1 hour by:
3/17/2018
Doctor: Dr. Muneeb Ali, Doctor replied 4 months ago
Dr. Muneeb Ali
Category: Medical
Satisfied Customers: 9,910
Experience: MBBS, MD, MCCM. Currently working in Critical Care Medicine with 10 year experience in Medicine
Verified

Hi,
Welcome to JA and thanks for this question. I'm sorry to hear about your symptoms. I just came online to see that you have been waiting for some time so ill quickly answer this for you. Actually, i don't think you have DVT for a couple of reasons. The first one being that if DVT was to occur then it would have occurred in the immediate postpartum period rather than several weeks later. Secondly, you have had an Ultrasound which was negative. Third, the D-dimers came back as negative which are EXTREMELY specific for DVT. This means that if D Dimers are negative then you CANNOT have DVT at all, positive d-dimers does not confirm the diagnosis but a negative test excludes DVT definitively. Fourth, the absence of redness, warmth etc also indicates that you cannot have DVT. So, in short, you should NOT be worried about a DVT at all.

Now as to why you are having this pain, the symptoms seem to correlate well with one of two things. The first one being that you may be experiencing compression of the nerves in the lower back which is why you may be experiencing pain in the other leg as well. Compression of the nerves in the back can be due to inflammation of the joints in the lower back or even due to a disc prolapse which many women can develop after pregnancy. Sciatica is a part of this condition. Now in this situation, ibuprofen would help improve the pain and it would be diagnosed with the help of a simple x-ray of the lower back or even an MRI. The treatment would be with anti-inflammatory medications like ibuprofen, muscle relaxants like Flexeril or even steroid injections in the back. But usually, physiotherapy would be the most helpful. The second possibility is that of inflammation of the tendons of the muscles in the calf. This would be diagnosed by a clinical examination and would be treated with ibuprofen and steroid injections.

I would suggest continuing with the ibuprofen but do get evaluated for the above conditions. DVT is conclusively ruled out in your case and you don't need to be worried about it at all.

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Customer reply replied 4 months ago
Due to continued pain in left leg (pain in foot, back of knee, calf, and thigh) I am still concerned about DVT. Is there anything I can do - besides going to the ER for more testing - to conclusively rule out that a DVT hasn’t developed since initial ultrasound on 2/11 and d-dimer on /27 (with delivery of baby via c-section on 1/17). I’m also afraid they may have missed something on ultrasound since the pain hasn’t decreased and symptoms onset and seem to be increasing (at first it was just my calf muscle) just over a month ago.
Doctor: Dr. J, Board Certified MD replied 4 months ago
Dr. J
Dr. J, Board Certified MD
Category: Medical
Satisfied Customers: 735
Experience: Gynecologist
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Hi there. Board-certified obgyn here.

How can I help you today?

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