Symptoms of a blood clot in the arm

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Blood clots can originate from almost any part of the body. They will travel through the blood stream until they become lodged in an artery or vein.

When a clot finds its way to your arm, there will be several physical symptoms that you will notice immediately -- it is critical to seek medical attention as soon as you suspect a blood clot has formed in your arm.


There are many different kinds of clots that can develop in the arms' arteries and veins. One type of clot that develops in the deeper tissue of the arm is known as a deep vein thrombosis (DVT). These sorts of clots can cause swelling and a redness to the skin, along with a great deal of pain. There also may be a warming sensation in the arm. In some cases, portions of a deep vein clot in the arm can separate from the main clot and end up in the lungs.


An arterial embolism is a clot that starts in one part of the body, but winds up clotting the arteries in another part of the body. When an arterial embolism winds up in an artery of the arm, it can result in the arm feeling weak, the skin becoming discoloured, a cold sensation in the fingers or the entire hand and the possible loss of movement in the entire arm.

Muscle symptoms

When a clot forms in the arm, it can sometimes cause symptoms in the arm muscles. Blood clots in the arm can lead to muscle spasms or even a noticeable weakness in the arm muscles. The muscles in an arm affected by a clot can begin to tingle; this could eventually lead to complete numbness of the arm.

Progressive symptoms

If early symptoms of a blood clot in the arm go untreated, then they are likely to lead to more noticeable and painful symptoms. Some more progressive symptoms of a blood clot in the arm include blisters beginning to form on the skin, lesions known as skin ulcers and dead skin that will leave large black patches on the arm. After a while, the skin may also start to shed.


When blood clot symptoms start to show on the surface of the arm, or the pain and other sensations associated with a blood clot are felt, it is important to get medical attention immediately. A blood clot limits, or eliminates, the flow of blood to the arm tissue and tissue cannot survive for long without oxygen-enriched blood. Any tissue that dies as a result of a blood clot will not repair itself, so it is essential to get a clot looked at as soon as you suspect one may exist.