What is Pulmonary Embolism (PE)?

Pulmonary embolism is a blockage in one of the arteries in your lungs. It can be caused by a clot that has traveled to the lungs from a deep vein, typically in the legs. It is a serious condition but can be treated.

This is a life-threatening condition. If you are experiencing symptoms, seek immediate medical attention.

Symptoms of Pulmonary Embolism (PE):

  • Sudden shortness of breath
  • Chest pain or discomfort that worsens when you take a deep breath or when you cough
  • Feeling lightheaded or dizzy, or fainting
  • Rapid pulse
  • Coughing up blood

Risk Factors for Pulmonary Embolism

  • Family history of clots or PE
  • Medical conditions or treatments:
    • Heart failure
    • Certain cancers
    • Surgery
    • Disorders that affect blood clotting
  • Prolonged immobility like bed rest or long trips
  • Smoking
  • Being overweight
  • Supplemental estrogen-like hormonal birth control
  • Pregnancy

How is Pulmonary Embolism treated?

Treatment for Pulmonary Embolism focuses on promptly breaking up the clot.

  • Blood thinners – medication to reduce the bloods ability to clot.
  • Clot busters –thrombolytics are clot-dissolving medications

Vascular Care at Guthrie

  • Our vascular surgery physicians are specially trained in vascular surgery and are board-certified.
  • Guthrie Heart and Vascular Care Center, located in Guthrie Robert Packer Hospital, is a state-of-the-art space for heart and vascular surgeries and procedures. Located near the emergency department and ICU, there are private patient rooms, cardiac catheterization labs, and a hybrid operating room. The unit is centered around quick efficient care of our patients.
  • Hybrid operating room – a state-of-the-art operating room with real-time, high-resolution digital imaging capabilities allowing for complex surgeries and studies to take place simultaneously with an integrated team of heart and valve specialists.

Guthrie heart surgeons are part of the largest cardiac care team in the northern Pa. and southern N.Y. Your heart is in good hands at Guthrie.

Guthrie interventional cardiology has advanced training in cardiac catheterization, performing ablation, stenting, angioplasty other structural heart procedures.

Our electrophysiology doctors and arrhythmia center teams help treat patients with arrhythmia issues like aFib using pacemakers or procedures like ablation.

Guthrie Cardiac and Vascular team treats patients with circulatory diseases: abdominal aortic aneurysm, carotid artery disease, and peripheral artery disease.