When to seek immediate medical advice

Theslow blood flow associated with polycythaemia can also cause blood clots . These can be seriousbecause theymay put you at risk of life-threatening problems such as:

  • heart attacks
  • pulmonary embolisms a blockage in the blood vessel that carries blood from the heart to the lungs
  • strokes

In some cases, a blood clot known as deep vein thrombosis (DVT) may form in your leg, before moving elsewhere in your body.Signs ofDVT or a pulmonary embolism can include:

  • pain, swelling,redness and tenderness in one of your legs
  • a heavy ache in the affected area
  • warm skin in the area of the clot
  • breathlessness
  • chest or upper back pain
  • coughing up blood
  • feeling lightheaded or dizzy
  • fainting

If you experience any of the above symptoms, seek medical help immediately. You should also seek emergency medical help if you think that you or someone you're withis having a heart attack or stroke.

Content supplied by the NHS Website

Medically Reviewed by a doctor on 21 Dec 2018