You don't have to fly long miles by economy class, to risk deep vein thrombosis, say experts. Their research has brought out a startling high risk of the 'economy class syndrome' in those on terra firma, right here among us, in IT offices, call centers etc.
The research led by Professor Richard Beasley of New Zealand's privately funded Medical Research Institute says that office workers, who stay glued to computer screens, are at greater risk of deadly blood clots forming in their legs, than long-distance air travelers.
Deep-vein thrombosis, or DVT, is a condition in which a blood clot forms in the deep veins of the legs. The condition can be fatal if part of the clot breaks off and blocks a blood vessel in the lungs.
The condition has been linked to long-haul flights and dubbed "economy class syndrome," because passengers traveling coach often do not have the space or opportunity to stretch enough to reduce the risk of blood clotting.
The study, which covered 62 patients aged under 65 who were admitted to hospital with blood clots, found that 34 per cent of patients admitted to hospital with blood clots had been seated at work for long periods.
The 34 percent finding is far higher than the 1.4 percent of blood-clot patients who recently traveled on long-haul flights, and the study has shown a clear link between travel and work-related thrombosis.
Beasley lists surprise findings of the study as those that reflect the very sedentary nature of today's working world- 12 to 14 hour daily shifts undertaken, almost constantly at the desk.
"Some of them (office workers) were going three to four hours at a time without getting up," he says.
The study will be published next month in the New Zealand Medical Journal.