Pulmonary embolism is caused by a blocked artery in the lungs. The most common
cause of such a blockage is a blood clot that forms in a
deep vein in the leg and travels to the lungs, where
it becomes lodged in a smaller lung artery.
Over 95% of blood
clots that cause pulmonary embolism are formed in the
deep leg veins.1 Clots also can form in the deep
veins of the arms or pelvis.
Occasionally blood clots develop in
surface veins, but these clots rarely lead to
In rare cases, pulmonary embolism may be
caused by other substances, including:2
- Small masses of infectious
- Fat, which can be released into the bloodstream after
some types of bone fractures, surgery, trauma, or severe burns.
bubbles from trauma, surgery, or medical procedures.
- Amniotic fluid
from normal or complicated pregnancy and childbirth (very rare).
Tumors caused by rapidly growing cancer cells.
substances-such as a catheter that can break off during a medical procedure,
talc, mercury, iodine, cotton, or the growth of tapeworm larvae.
This answer should not be considered medical advice...This answer should not be considered medical advice and should not take the place of a doctor’s visit. Please see the bottom of the page for more information or visit our Terms and Conditions.
Thanks for your feedback.
63 of 70 found this helpful
Read the Original Article: Pulmonary Embolism-Cause WebMD Medical Reference from Healthwise This information is not intended to replace the advice of a doctor. Healthwise disclaims any liability for the decisions you make based on this information.
© 1995-2011 Healthwise, Incorporated. Healthwise, Healthwise for every health decision, and the Healthwise logo are trademarks of Healthwise, Incorporated.