PE Specialist

Nader Mahmood, MD, FCCP -  - Pulmonary Medicine

North Jersey Pulmonary Associates

Nader Mahmood, MD, FCCP

Pulmonary Medicine & Sleep Medicine Specialist located in Totowa, Paterson, & Secaucus, NJ

A pulmonary embolism, sometimes simply called PE, is an arterial blockage that’s typically caused by a traveling blood clot. If you have signs of a pulmonary embolism like shortness of breath, cough, or chest pain, it’s important to see an experienced pulmonary specialist like Dr. Nader Mahmood at North Jersey Pulmonary Associates right away for diagnosis and treatment. Paterson, Totowa, New Jersey, and Secausus area patients can book online now or call the office today.

PE Q & A

What is a pulmonary embolism?

A pulmonary embolism is a blood clot that occurs inside your lungs. Blood clots, whether small or large, can interfere with regular blood flow and reduce blood oxygen levels. This means that pulmonary embolism damage can be serious or possibly even fatal if it isn’t treated.

What causes a pulmonary embolism?

Pulmonary embolisms can happen for a variety of reasons, but the most common cause is deep vein thrombosis. Deep vein thrombosis starts with a blood clot in the lower leg, or sometimes in the pelvic region. If that blood clot travels upward and gets lodged in your lungs, pulmonary embolism is the result.

What are the signs of pulmonary embolism?

The most common indicators of pulmonary embolism include:

  • Shortness of breath, usually the strongest indicator
  • Bluish tint to the skin
  • Chest pain
  • Feeling of lightheadedness
  • Shallow and rapid breathing
  • Erratic heartbeat
  • Anxiety

Shortness of breath is the main symptom to watch out for, but if you have a pulmonary embolism it's quite likely that you'll have at least one or two of the other symptoms as well.

Am I at risk for pulmonary embolism?

Although pulmonary embolism can occur in anyone, certain groups may be at high risk. Some of the pulmonary embolism risk factors include:

  • History of blood clotting disorders
  • Family history of pulmonary or any other kind of embolisms
  • Sedentary lifestyle
  • Prolonged immobility, for example, bed rest during pregnancy
  • Obesity
  • Recent surgery
  • Recent broken bone
  • Smoking cigarettes
  • Taking hormone replacements
  • Age over 60

Although you can't control all pulmonary embolism risk factors, some things are very much within your control. Sometimes, lifestyle changes like eating healthier to lose weight and stopping cigarette smoking can help you control your risk and possibly avoid a pulmonary embolism completely.

What is the treatment for pulmonary embolism?

The first line of pulmonary embolism treatment is medication such as blood thinners, which prevent fresh blood clots from developing. Another option is a clot-dissolving medication, but those are usually used only in emergencies because they can provoke excessive bleeding in some cases. Dr. Mahmood will create a treatment plan for your specific needs.

Don't push your concerns about pulmonary embolism away. Get the help you need now by scheduling online or calling the North Jersey Pulmonary Associates office.