WASHINGTON – The blood clot that led to Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton’s hospitalization on Sunday is lodged in a vein behind her right ear, her doctors disclosed in a statement late Monday.
The doctors said the clot, called a right transverse sinus venous thrombosis, was discovered on Sunday when Clinton underwent an MRI as a “routine follow-up” to the treatment she has been receiving for a concussion. The vein runs between the brain and skull.
Drs. Lisa Bardack with the Mt. Kisco Medical Group and Gigi El-Bayoumi at The George Washington University Hospital said in their statement that the clot is being treated with blood thinners. They didn’t predict when she would be able to leave New York-Presbyterian Hospital, saying that she would be released “once the medication dose has been established.”
They said the clot didn’t result in a stroke or any neurological damage.
The doctors said that “in all other aspects of her recovery, the secretary is making excellent progress, and we are confident she will make a full recovery.” They described Clinton as being “in good spirits, engaging with her doctors, her family and her staff.”
Clinton suffered a concussion 2 1/2 weeks ago after she fell while she was battling a flu virus. She has made no public appearances since then and was forced to miss congressional hearings exploring the terrorist attack in September in Libya that killed four Americans.
With Clinton releasing only bare-bones information about her condition, most medical speculation has focused on the possibility that the clot formed in her leg while she was resting in bed trying to recover.
Clots in the leg are not uncommon and pose risks largely because they can travel into the lungs, potentially causing severe distress or even death. Clots in the head are rarer.
Clinton is in the final few weeks of her service as secretary of state. President Obama has chosen Sen. John Kerry (D-Mass.) to succeed her.