Blood clots can form in various parts of the body and for many different reasons. When undergoing foot surgery, development of a blood clot in the leg can occur. This is not something that happens commonly and every persons' risk level is different. In the case of surgery, blood clots tend to form in the leg as a result of use of a tourniquet for extended periods of time and decreased mobilization (less walking). Other risk factors that attribute to the development of blood clots includes medication (oral contraceptives especially), underlying blood clotting disease, BMI and the history of blood clots.
While these blood clots can feel different, there are a few classic signs to be aware of;
1. A feeling like a deep and intense cramp or 'charlie horse' in the calf area
2. Swelling of the calf muscle area on one leg, but not the other
3. Redness and warmth of the calf muscle
If these symptoms don't arise, or they do and area not addressed, feelings of shortness of breath can occur as the clot travels to the lungs. These are all things discussed in pre-op to ensure that should a clot develop, medical attention is sought early to prevent detrimental results.