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Formation of a blood clot in a vein

Normal blood flow

Cross section of vein, showing blood flowing normally through valve
slide 1 of 3
slide 1 of 3, Normal blood flow,

Normally, one-way valves in the veins keep blood flowing to the heart.

Blood clot forming

Blood clot forming
slide 2 of 3
slide 2 of 3, Blood clot forming,

A blood clot can form when the valve in a vein does not work properly. If the valve does not open normally, blood cells can collect behind the valve and begin to stick together to form a clot.

Formed blood clot

Cross section of a vein, showing blood clot formed around valve
slide 3 of 3
slide 3 of 3, Formed blood clot,

When a blood clot gets large enough, it can stop the flow of blood in the vein.

Current as of: December 15, 2019

Author: Healthwise Staff
E. Gregory Thompson MD - Internal Medicine
Martin J. Gabica MD - Family Medicine
Adam Husney MD - Family Medicine
Jeffrey S. Ginsberg MD - Hematology

This information does not replace the advice of a doctor. Healthwise, Incorporated, disclaims any warranty or liability for your use of this information. Your use of this information means that you agree to the Terms of Use. Learn how we develop our content.

This information does not replace the advice of a doctor. Healthwise, Incorporated, disclaims any warranty or liability for your use of this information. Your use of this information means that you agree to the Terms of Use. Learn how we develop our content.

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