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Coronavirus patients may be at risk of potentially life-threatening blood clots, according to medical experts and emerging research.

Doctors treating those diagnosed with COVID-19, the disease called by the novel coronavirus, are seeing patients with clots throughout the body, including in the lungs and beneath the skin’s surface.

While COVID-19 was initially believed to be a respiratory virus, there’s growing concern around the disease attacking organs like the kidneys, heart and liver.

Dr. Jeffrey Laurence, a hematologist at Weill Cornell Medicine in New York City, said the blood clots related to COVID-19 are “a major issue we haven’t seen before.”

“I get called on severe COVID patients in the intensive care unit, typically because the kidney doctor tells me that they’ve had a patient on anticoagulants [blood thinners]… and their blood is clotting. As they’re drawing the blood, it’s clotting their tube,” he said.

READ MORE: ‘COVID toes’ could be another symptom of coronavirus infection

“That’s unprecedented. I’ve seen that just a few times in my life, and I’m seeing that very, very frequently.”

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Laurence co-authored a recent report that examined skin and lung tissue from five patients with severe COVID-19.

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