In 2003, while on assignment covering the war in Iraq, journalist David Bloom died of a blood clot that formed in his leg and traveled to his lungs.
“We had braced ourselves for all the war-related dangers that that assignment entailed," his wife, Melanie Bloom, told TODAY.com later. “But when I got that call, I had never heard of DVT myself and I don't think David ever had. The more I learned, the more shocked I was."
David and Melanie Bloom weren't unique in their limited knowledge of the dangers of blood clots. Almost one in four people don't know about blood clots or their signs and symptoms, putting themselves at risk of not recognizing danger until it is too late.
The story of National DVT Month begins with unnecessary tragedy, but it offers hope too. Here's a look at the history of this national effort to prevent the disease sometimes called the "silent killer."