Can symptoms of a DVT or pulmonary embolism come and go?

Patient

Q: I am a 38 year old man and had a DVT 6 months ago following knee surgery. I traveled from the U.S. to Australia on a long flight and am paranoid about getting another DVT. I excercised prior to my flight, hydrated, took asprin, wore compression stockings, streched regularly and did exercises. When I landed 4 days ago I had some soreness in my legs that went away. Now I have a cough (but I had a sinus problem before I left thew US.) The cough improved today from yesterday. I feel like I have to breath a little harder than normal. If I had a pulmonary embolism would the cough improve? Would the pain leave my legs? My legs never got hot, swollen, or discolored. Thanks

Doctor

A:   From what you have explained it does not seem like you have encounteres another PE. PE is an acute condition in which you will get severe  shortness of breath along with pain in the legs. Your symptoms seem more likely than not to be either related to your sinus or another respiratory tract infection that you may have picked up. An untreated PE can potentially get worse ansd sicne thats not the case i would not worry. All the best.

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