Three weeks ago, critical care pulmonologist Hugh Cassiere encountered something he hadn’t seen in 24 years of practicing medicine.A 45-year-old man arrived at the hospital where Cassiere works, North Shore University Hospital on Long Island, New York, with fever and severe fatigue — well-known symptoms of the coronavirus — and went on to test positive for it.Full coverage of the coronavirus outbreakBut then the man developed a complication not usually associated with respiratory viruses: a blood clot in his leg that was so dangerous that doctors were forced to remove the leg below his knee. The development was totally unexpected, Cassiere said.”He had no history of peripheral vascular disease, nothing that would predict” this outcome, Cassiere told NBC News. “That’s how severe this clotting can be.”Cassiere isn’t the only doctor who has noticed unusual clotting in patients with COVID-19, the disease associated with the coronavirus.”We’re used to patients that are critically ill having a high frequency of blood clots,” said Dr. Mark Crowther, chairman of the Department of Medicine at McMaster University in Hamilton, Ontario, who is a member of the American Society of Hematology. “But nowhere near the magnitude that we’re seeing in COVID patients.”A study from the Netherlands


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