ALLERGY, RESPIRATORY
Folic Acid Might Offer Allergy Relief
Know Your Asthma Triggers
Overweight Moms More Likely to Have Asthmatic Kids
ALTERNATIVE MEDICINE
Could Chinese Herb Be a Natural Viagra?
Acupuncture, Real or Fake, Eases Back Pain
Needling Away Your Headaches With Acupuncture
ANIMAL CARE
Separation Anxiety, Canine-Style
Animals Respond to Acupuncture's Healing Touch
'Comfort Dogs' Come to Emotional Rescue
BONES & JOINTS
Improved Hip Implants Can Last 20 Years
Varicose, Spider Veins May Be Inevitable for Some
In Elderly Women, Hip Fractures Often Follow Arm Breaks
CANCER
Vitamin D May Lower Colon Cancer Risk
Minorities Distrust Medical System More
Some Spices Cut Cancer Risk That Comes With Grilled Burgers
CAREGIVING
Mild Flu Season Coming to a Close
Bariatric Surgery Centers Don't Deliver Better Outcomes
Health Tip: Benefitting From Adult Day Care
CIRCULATORY SYSTEM
Support Network May Play Role in Benefits of Drinking
Exercise Extends Life of Kidney Patients
Walk 100 Steps a Minute for 'Moderate' Exercise
COSMETIC
Gum Chewing May Cut Craving for Snacks
The Acne Drug Accutane More Than Doubles Depression Risk
Contact Lenses Boost Kids' Self-Image
DENTAL, ORAL
Study Links Osteoporosis Drugs to Jaw Trouble
Health Tip: At Risk for Gingivitis
Gum Disease Might Boost Cancer Risk
DIABETES
Spices, Herbs Boost Health for Diabetics
Poor Blood Sugar Control After Heart Surgery Impacts Outcomes
Americans Consuming More Sugary Beverages
DIET, NUTRITION
Milk Destroys Antioxidant Benefits in Blueberries
Lose Weight, Sleep Apnea May Improve
Brown Rice Tied to Better Heart Health in Study
DISABILITIES
Review Finds Marijuana May Help MS Patients
Could Your Cell Phone Help Shield You From Alzheimer's?
ENVIRONMENTAL HEALTH
Warmer-Than-Average Temperatures Raise Migraine Risk
Cleaning House May Be Risky for Women With Asthma
Radiation Exposure Linked to Aggressive Thyroid Cancers
EYE CARE, VISION
Brain Adapts to Age-Related Eye Disease
Retinal Gene Is Linked to Childhood Blindness
Clues Found to Brain Mechanism Behind Migraines
FITNESS
Fliers Can Keep Blood Clots at Bay
Consciousness Helps the Mind and Body Work Together
Tai Chi and Qigong Offer Many Health Benefits: Review
GASTROINTESTINAL PROBLEMS
Soothing Imagery May Help Rid Some Kids of Stomach Pain
New Yogurt May Ease Stomach Ulcers
Gum Chewing May Speed Colon Surgery Recovery
GENERAL HEALTH
Have Fun This Summer, But DO Be Careful
Eating Nuts May Help Cholesterol Levels
More Calcium And Dairy Products in Childhood Could Mean Longer Life
HEAD & NECK
Ski Helmets Encouraged for All
Many Children Will Outgrow Headaches
Zen May Thicken Brain, Thwart Pain
HEALTH & TECHNOLOGY
Save Your Aging Brain, Try Surfing The Web
The Internet Is Becoming One-Stop Shopping for Health Help
Subway Defibrillators Save Lives
HEARING
Noise Hurts Men's Hearing More, Study Shows
Summer Sounds Can Lead to Hearing Loss
HEART & CARDIOVASCULAR
More Steps a Day Lead to Better Health
Women Who Run May Benefit From Extra Folic Acid
Obese People Seem to Do Better With Heart Disease
INFECTIOUS DISEASE
Viral Infection Might Trigger High Blood Pressure
Swine Flu Loves a Crowd
Swine Flu Closes Three Schools in NYC
INFERTILITY
Obesity May Affect Fertility in Young Womene
KID'S HEALTH
Combo Treatment Eases Wheezing in Babies
Don't Leave Your Kids In The Car !
Too Many Infants Short on Vitamin D
MEN'S HEALTH
Soy Linked to Low Sperm Count
Whole Grains, Bran May Fight Hypertension in Men
Lots of Sex May Prevent Erectile Dysfunction
MENTAL HEALTH
Meaningful Conversations Boost Kids' Language Skills
Environmental Chemicals May Affect Male Reproduction
17 Ways to Create the Perfect Workday
PAIN
Acupuncture, Real or Fake, Eases Back Pain
'Cell Phone Elbow' -- A New Ill for the Wired Age
Alleviating Rheumatoid Arthritis
PHYSICAL THERAPY
PREGNANCY
Mom's Extra Pregnancy Pounds May Raise Child's Heart Risks
Prenatal Stress May Boost Baby's Asthma Risk
Woman in America Are Delaying Motherhood, Study Says
SENIORS
Life Expectancy in U.S. Hits New High
More Whole Grains May Mean Less Fat
The Healthy Habits of Centenarians
SEXUAL HEALTH
SLEEP DISORDERS
6 to 8 Hours of Shut-Eye Is Optimal for Health
Pay Attention to Signs That Say You're Too Fatigued to Drive
Moderate Aerobics May Ease Insomnia Symptoms
WOMEN'S HEALTH
Natural Relief for Painful Menstrual Cramps
Natural Therapies for Menopause
Exercise As Well As Acupuncture, May Ease Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome
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Fliers Can Keep Blood Clots at Bay

SATURDAY, Oct. 11 (HealthDay News) -- Acting U.S. Surgeon General Dr. Steven K. Galson recently released a "Call to Action" to reduce the number of cases of deep vein thrombosis and pulmonary embolism in the United States.

The American Physical Therapy Association (APTA) said it supports this initiative and offers tips for preventing these life-threatening conditions during air travel.

A blood clot, called a deep vein thrombosis (DVT), can occur after long periods of being immobile, such as on long plane flights, according to Susan Scherer, associate professor of physical therapy at Regis University in Denver and a member of the APTA.

If a DVT occurs, the clot may dislodge and travel to the lungs, a condition called pulmonary embolus.

Symptoms of leg DVT include swelling in one or both legs and calf tenderness. People with pulmonary embolus symptoms may experience shortness of breath and increased heart rate.

"People who experience any of these symptoms should always see the doctor, especially if they occur following a long period of immobilization," said Scherer in an APTA news release.

To reduce the risks of DVT in flight, Scherer said people should wear compression stockings to keep excess blood from remaining in the legs. In addition, she advised seated exercises to keep the blood flowing, the joints mobile, and the muscles relaxed.

"Simple exercises can help prevent other typical symptoms experienced by people who fly, including leg cramping, toe cramping, and general lower-body aching," said former APTA President Marilyn Moffat in the news release. "Sitting for long periods may lead to swelling of the feet, which becomes obvious to many passengers when they try to put their shoes back on at the end of their flight."

The APTA suggests that passengers on long flights get up and walk up and down the aisle every hour or so -- when the "Fasten Seat Belt" sign is off -- to work the leg muscles and ease the back.

"Performing these exercises will keep the leg muscles from contracting and will help relieve stiffness from the flight. The exercises also will help prevent fluid build-up in the legs, and stretching the back and the muscles around the torso will prevent stiffening," said Moffat.

Finally, since dehydration may occur during a flight due to high altitudes and dry, pressurized cabin air, the APTA advises that passengers drink plenty of water before and during the flight to help prevent muscle cramping and aching due to dehydration.

More information

The U.S. National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute has more about deep vein thrombosis.



-- Krisha McCoy



SOURCE: American Physical Therapy Association, news release, Sept. 29, 2008

Last Updated: Oct. 11, 2008

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