Why do some people form a DVT (blood clot) on a flight and others don't?

Many reasons. There are many reason for forming blood clots. Prolonged sitting on a plane is a co-factor which may be the "last straw" which causes the clot. Obesity, poor circulation, genetic conditions, lifestyle problems (smoking) and certain medications are among the many causes of dvt. It is best to discuss your potential risks with your provider before any long plane or car trip.
Many reasons. There are many reasons, as dr. Toppin said in her very nice answer. Much of the reason why people develop dvts on flights has to do with immobility. If you don't move around your chance of a clot becomes greater. Wearing graduated compression stockings helps, as does making sure you keep yourself well hydrated. Water is good for you and it makes you walk around to go to the bathroom.

Related Questions

Please explain why some people form a DVT (blood clot) on a flight and others don't?

Many factors. Obesity, injury, birth control pills, recent surgery, advanced age, long flight, compressed calf, history of previous clot - all promote a clot. Shorter flight, moving about, stretching, standing every 2-3 hours, younger age - help prevent it.
Some is luck. Airlines tend to keep the cabin humidity very low (it costs them money to humidify) and if you don't drink to keep hydrated (or drink alcohol) you can get dehydrated. Dehydration and inactivity are big risk factors in normal people for blood clots in the leg. Always keep hydrated and move around on long flights or road trips in cars/buses/trains.

I'm on Plavix 75 mg. For a stroke that I had in 2012. I had a DVT in February of this year and was prescribed Eliquis 5mg. To take for a blood clot t?

Arterial & venous. Plavix helps prevents arterial clots (cholesterol plaques in the arteries). Eliquis helps prevent venous clots (thrombus in the veins). The two medicines work differently & on different parts of the circulatory system. Most strokes are arterial but some are venous. DVTs are venous by definition. Hope this helps; use HealthTap Prime to voice your concerns to a live doctor & get advice on what to do.

How do I know if I have DVT or a blood clot?

Pain and swelling. The most common symptom of DVT is pain and the most common physical finding is swelling. However, not everyone has these. If you have unexplained swelling with or without calf or thigh pain then a venous ultrasound would be indicated to look for a dvt. Sometimes even a ct scan or mrv is necessary. The bottom line is, if DVT is considered, then proper testing is required.

Would a person who experiences one blood clot have to be treated for life? Is DVT a deadly thig?

DVTS and PE's. Yes, dvts can lead to pulmonary embolism and death if not treated. Many people who get a DVT do not need to be treated for life. They need to be treated until the clot has resolved. And, if there is any complicating factors that need addressing as to why the clot formed then this can slow down the process. But, with good health care this is just a bump in the road of life.
Treatment varies. Dvt has the potential to be life threatening and that is why treatment with blood thinners is usually an urgent situation. The goal of blood thinners is to prevent any further clot formation and and to prevent clots from lodging in the lungs. One clot does not necessarily mean long term anticoagulation. Each person has to be evaluated individually to evaluate their risks for future clot formation.

Question about blood clots in lungs. Do they have to come from dvt?

Yes. Pulmonary embolus could be clot, fat, air or foreign body. Clots is the most common and almost always comes from a DVT anywhere in the body but most commonly from lower extremities DVT, although in some cases of pe the physician may not be able to find the source.

If you have venous insufficiency does that mean you are more likely to get blood clots? Like a DVT?

Yes. Venous insufficiency means the blood does not keep moving in your veins towards the heart (veins have valves that prevent the blood from going backward). Clotting inside our blood vessels happens under 3 circumstances: 1) slow blood movement or velocity 2) abnormal blood composition like abnormal cell, toxins etc 3) roughened inner surface (called: intima) of the blood vessel like in people with a.
Dvt. Having varicose veins does not increase your risk for dvt Occasionally a superficial vein if traumatized can clot but this is also rare.