Powers home from hospital; date of return unconfirmed

Katrina Tollin

Doctors released UT President William Powers Jr. from St. David’s South Austin Medical Center on Sunday following treatment for a pulmonary embolism.

Powers, 64, is resting at home and being kept current on University affairs, said Don Hale, UT’s vice president for public affairs.

“There is no definite date set for his return to the office,” Hale said.

Doctors discovered the blood clot on Feb. 8 during an examination, and Powers entered the hospital that day, according to a press release issued by the University.

According to the Austin American-Statesman, Powers started experiencing chest pains while at the Super Bowl in Arlington.

A pulmonary embolism is a blood clot that blocks blood flow to the lungs. Usually originating in the leg, the clot can be caused by prolonged sitting or inactivity, said Dr. Steven R. Bailey, a vascular surgeon and director of the Janey Briscoe Center of Excellence in Cardiovascular Research at the UT Health Science Center in San Antonio.

Powers received blood thinners as treatment, according to a statement made by his doctor in the daily University updates.

The symptoms can range from a fast heart rate to what people usually report as shortness of breath and chest pain, said Austin vascular surgeon Dr. Jeffrey Apple.

“Once [people] get above 60 and especially above 80, their chances of getting a blood clot are extremely high,” Apple said.