Normally, blood flows from the right side of the heart through the
pulmonary arteries and lungs before it returns to the left side of the heart. A
paradoxical embolism is a blood clot that does not travel with normal blood
flow. This type of embolism often causes a stroke because the clot moves
directly from the right side of the heart to the left through a hole (defect)
in the septum, which separates the upper right and left heart chambers. It then
bypasses the lungs and is pumped straight toward the brain.
January 14, 2011
E. Gregory Thompson, MD - Internal Medicine & Jeffrey S. Ginsberg, MD - Hematology
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