A stroke occurs due to ischemia (lack of blood supply) or hemorrhage in the brain. Both can cause impairment to the brain’s function, triggering side effects based on the affected lobe. If you have suffered from a blood clot or stroke while using this birth control, please contact us for a free consultation from a Nuvaring lawyer representing women throughout the United States. Some people may experience problems with their vision; others might suddenly be unable to move one side of their bodies; and still others may lose their ability to speak. These and many other functional deficits can surface following a stroke.
Below, we’ll explain how an ischemic event occurs in the brain. Blood clots (called thrombi) are the root cause. We’ll describe where they form, how they travel, and the circumstances that contribute to their arrival in the brain. It’s important to note that even a small thrombus can cause a wide range of Nuvaring side effects.
Inappropriate Blood Clots In The Legs
Thrombi often form in the legs due, in part, to inactivity. Normally, when you move your legs, the muscles compress the veins, and push blood toward your heart. If you are routinely inactive for long periods of time, blood circulates more slowly.
This problem is exacerbated by the hormones released by the birth control ring. Studies have shown that estrogen and a progestin called desogestrel increase the likelihood of inappropriate clot formation. Once blood clots form in the legs, they pose a risk of becoming separated from the venous wall. They are then able to travel to the heart.
How Clots Travel To The Heart
The venous system in the legs connects to a large blood vessel known as the inferior vena cava (IVC). Deoxygenated blood travels upward from the legs into the IVC, which extends to the heart. The IVC delivers blood to the upper right chamber of the heart (i.e. right atrium).
When a thrombus in the legs breaks off, it migrates along the same route. It is carried along by deoxygenated blood to the inferior vena cava, and onward toward the heart. As blood enters the right atrium, so does the clot.
Circumstances That Result In Clots Exiting The Heart
Deoxygenated blood flows from the right atrium to the right ventricle (lower chamber), and then to the lungs, where it is replenished with oxygen. Blood then travels from the lungs to the left atrium, and is then pumped to the left ventricle. Finally, it is pumped out of the heart to the rest of the body.
When thrombi enter the right side of the heart, they cannot immediately cross to the left side (barring a congenital defect, which we will explain in a moment). A wall of tissue called the septum separates the two sides. Clots are instead pumped to the lungs via the pulmonary arteries, where they travel downstream until they are either dissolved, or become lodged. A thrombus that obstructs one of these arteries causes a pulmonary embolism.
One of several outcomes of a PE is increased blood pressure in the lungs and right side of the heart. This pressure can trigger an arrhythmia, a condition in which the heart’s rhythm becomes abnormal. It may beat too slowly, too quickly, or quiver in an erratic fashion. Some arrhythmias can prevent the heart from pumping blood properly, allowing it to pool inside the chambers. When blood pools, it becomes stagnant and can begin to clot. If this occurs in the left atrium or ventricle, the clots can be pumped out of the heart.
A congenital defect called patent foramen ovale may allow thrombi that arrive in the right atrium to cross directly to the left atrium. This defect is a hole in the septum between the atria. As before, once clots reach the left side, they can be pumped outside the heart, where they migrate through a large artery called the aorta.
How Migrating Thrombi Cause A Stroke
Oxygen-rich blood flows from the heart through the aorta to the rest of the body. Downstream in the aorta lie the left and right carotid arteries; they deliver blood to every part of the brain, ensuring a constant supply of oxygen and nutrients. Thrombi can travel into these blood vessels. Similar to clots in the pulmonary arteries, they will migrate downstream until they dissolve or cause a blockage. The latter event will trigger a stroke.
Nuvaring Lawsuit 2011
Some side effects involving a stroke may cause minimal difficulty for the survivor. Others, such as paralysis, vision deficits, and speech-language impairments, can be debilitating. If you have suffered from blood clots, pulmonary embolism, stroke, or other serious Nuvaring side effects, you may be able to file a claim for compensation. Contact an experienced Nuvaring lawyer to discuss your options.