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Doctor insights on: Air Embolism Circulatory Disorders

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Dr. Geoffrey Rutledge
97 doctors shared insights

Air Embolism (Definition)

Blood vessels are made to carry blood - liquid. A small amount of air in a vessel is not usually a big deal as it will be absorbed into the blood. Larger volumes of air (10 mL or larger) can be significant to block blood flow in that vessel. That is bad in the brain (stroke) and really bad in the heart because ...Read more


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Was fingering and now i'm worried I have an air embolism?

Why?: What is fingering? Why would you think about air embolism? For air embolism you would have to inject air to obstruct your right heart, for example with a syringe. There there does not seem to any issue. ...Read more

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What are early warning signs and symptoms of air embolism?

What are early warning signs and symptoms of air embolism?

Variable: Small amounts of air in circulation may be asymptomatic. Introduction of 100 cc or more of air may cause heart failure, respiratory distress, presence of air in the heart on chest x-ray and in severe cases alterations in mental status and stroke like symptoms. ...Read more

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What are treatments for air embolism?

Recompression: Recompression is the most effective treatment of an air embolism. Normally this is carried out in a recompression chamber where as pressure increase the solubility of a gas increases. It is also important to promptly place the patient in trendelenburg position (head down) and on their left side. This positioning helps to trap air in the apex of the ventricle. ...Read more

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What is the treatment for air embolism?

Oxygen, hyperbaric: Depending on the cause of air embolism, treatment with oxygen or in severe cases with hyperbaric oxygen may be needed. Introduction of less than 100 cc of air in the venous side may not require specific treatment. Air embolism due to decompression sickness is the main reason for using hyperbaric oxygen, i.e., putting the patient in a chamber with high pressure. ...Read more

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How can an air embolism kill your fetus?

Extremely rare: Air embolism refers to air or gas entering the blood stream. In an adult it can be from an intravenous line. In the case of a fetus the potential would be from the mothers bloodstream or vaginal canal. If you have concerns then discuss these with your obstetrician. They are here to help you and rare case reports exist. ...Read more

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Can an air embolism during sex really kill?

Can an air embolism during sex  really kill?

How?: How would you get an air embolism during sex? Death during sex seems to be almost entirely due to stress on the heart leading to a heart attack in people with advanced heart disease. In general, sex is healthy. Practice safe sex at all times. ...Read more

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What are the treatments for air embolism from an iv?

What are the treatments for air embolism from an iv?

Depends. : Small amount (a few bubbles) are generally very well tolerated and do not need any treatment. Large amounts entering the central veins, especially during prodedures like a central line placement, is more concerning. The best "treatment" is prevention - like keeping the patients head below the heart. If air embolism occurs we are taught to position patients certain ways and aspirate. ...Read more

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Am afraid of an air embolism and i'm 8 months pregnant?

Am afraid of an air embolism and i'm 8 months pregnant?

Why?: Air can only get into veins from intravenous, and is carefully watched. Pregnancy does not produce that problem. Other issues of obesity, sedentary deep vein clots are more of a concern. Amniotic fluid embolism is rare. ...Read more

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How long does chest pain associated with air embolism last?

How long does chest pain associated with air embolism last?

Untreated till death: Air embolism is a a serious lethal problem when air enter vascular system , like when placing central catheters , vascular disruptions, will loss of consciousness , convulsions , heart attacks, asssociate chest pains , deep water divers, release of micro bubbles of air causing neurological damage ( bends ). ...Read more

Dr. Ronald Krauser
1 doctor shared a insight

Embolus (Definition)

Usually a blood clot that migrates from one area of the body to another. Most commonly a clot from a leg vein to the lung . It can also pertain to a clot, or atheromatous material that moves from one segment to another, such as cholesterol material in a carotid lesion moving into the ...Read more


Dr. Olav Jaren
30 doctors shared insights

Circulatory Disorders (Definition)

Circulatory disorders is a term for any disease that affects veins or arteries ...Read more