What is Economy class syndrome?

Deep vein blood clots, medically known as deep venous thrombosis, has long been associated with air travel. This is also known as Economy class syndrome and has mainly been linked to people traveling by the economy class. It is the result of sitting for long hours on seats with insufficient legroom. Blood clots usually develop in the lower legs between the ankle and knee.

Risk factors:

Although known as an economy class syndrome, this is also seen in people flying by business and first class. Approximately, 5% of long-haul passengers are seen to suffer from this condition. Nonetheless, the other factors that determine this condition are age, weight, medication, pregnancy, length of flight and general health of the person.

Prevention:economy class flight

  • Avoid sitting for long hours in the same position.
  • Get up to walk when possible.
  • Stretch your legs often.
  • There are several effortless exercises you can do while seated.
  • Keep yourself well hydrated before and during flight.
  • Avoid dehydrating beverages like alcohol.
  • Do not wear tight clothing.
  • Opt for ‘Support socks’


  • Appropriate diagnosis is important and one should visit a doctor immediately.
  • Along with medications, the doctor will also recommend exercises which should be done on a regular basis.
  • Compression support socks has shown to be effective. It provides pressure to help pump fluid and reduce swelling.
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