Pulmonary Embolism & Life Insurance

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Pulmonary Embolism & Life InsuranceHaving a pulmonary embolism can be a worrying experience and it might be something that plays on your mind. You might wonder what might happen if you have one again, and how you and your family might cope.

We have a team of experienced advisers that can help ease your concerns when it comes to buying life insurance.

Things we need to know to help you:

  • How many times have you had a pulmonary embolism?
  • What was the cause?
  • What was the medication or treatment used?
  • Did you need to have surgery?

Life insurance for people that have had a pulmonary embolism can be available. Quite often insurers will ask your permission to see a report from your GP, to confirm your diagnosis and overall health.

The insurer will use this report to confirm how many embolisms you have had, the time since they were present and any specific causes that have been identified.

Where the pulmonary embolism has been a one-off and you have not needed strong medication, the insurer may be able to offer life insurance at normal terms.

If you have had multiple embolisms or have needed stronger treatment, the insurance provider may offer life insurance at non-standard terms (price increase).

In some instances an insurer might postpone or decline your application for insurance. This can be hard and frustrating to hear, but please do not assume that this will be the case with every insurer. We can help you find the right one, for you.

Critical illness cover pays out a cash lump sum of money, if you are diagnosed with a medical condition that is listed in the insurer’s claims set e.g. cancer, heart attack, stroke.

Critical illness cover applications for people that have had a pulmonary embolism, will also be assessed alongside a report from your GP, with most mainstream insurers.

The insurance provider that you approach will want to know how many embolisms you have had, the reasons the embolism developed and how long it has been since the last one.

If you have had one pulmonary embolism and not needed strong medication to treat it, the insurance provider may be able to offer critical illness cover at standard terms.

Where there have been multiple embolisms and/or strong medications have been used, the insurer may be able to offer critical illness cover at special terms. This will most likely be a premium increase.

In some circumstances it might be that an application for critical illness cover is declined. There are specialist policies that you can apply for, but it’s important to really make sure that you understand any exclusions on the policy.


Income protection pays you a replacement of your monthly income, if you are unable to work due to ill health.

Income protection for people that have had a pulmonary embolism may be available at normal terms.

This will depend upon how many embolisms you had, your recovery from them and any ongoing follow-ups that you need. People that have had one embolism and did not need strong medication, might be able to get income protection at standard terms with some insurers.

The insurance provider will be particularly interested in how many embolisms you have had and if they affected your ability to work. They could ask about how much time you needed off work, whilst you have the pulmonary embolism.

If you have had multiple embolisms and needed stronger treatment to remove it,  it is possible that the insurer may offer cover at special terms (premium increase).

There are some situation where an application for income protection could be declined, due to your history of embolisms. There are a lot of different insurers and routes to income protection, so please do not be put off if an insurer has said no. There are many more to try and we can then do that for you.


Should you find that the terms provided for income protection do not suit your needs then it is worthwhile considering accident, sickness and unemployment cover. This alternative policy provides a monthly income replacement of between 12 and 24 months if you are unable to work due to long-term disability, injury or involuntary redundancy.

Accident, sickness and unemployment policies are not medically underwritten meaning that your condition will have no bearing on the acceptance terms of the policy. However you should be fully aware that any claim that you make on the policy will exclude anything related to your pre-existing medical history.


Are you going on holiday? We work alongside a specialist travel insurance broker who can help you choose the right insurance for you. To find out more about arranging travel insurance having had a pulmonary embolism, please click here.

What is a Pulmonary Embolism?

A pulmonary embolism is classified when a blockage in the pulmonary artery occurs, preventing blood from reaching the lungs. Typically the blockage is a blood clot that has travelled from the legs to the heart and is generally caused by periods of inactivity (DVT), blood vessel damage or when the blood clots too easily. The condition can be life threatening and it is important that structured medication, treatment and prevention techniques are used to reduce the risks of further blood clots.

Also known as: PE

Linked with: Deep vein thrombosis (DVT), strokes, vasculitis, cancer, heart failure, thromobphilia, Antiphospholipid Syndrome, Hughes syndrome, venous thromboembolism (VTE)

Some potential problems experienced by individuals who have had a pulmonary embolism include:

  • Chest or upper back pain
  • Coughing
  • Dizziness
  • Shortness of breath
  • Use of compression stockings
  • Structured exercise routines
  • Acenocoumarol (Sinthrome)
  • Actilyse
  • Alteplase (Actilyse)
  • Apixaban (Eliquis)
  • Bemiparin
  • Bemiparin Sodium (Zibor)
  • Computerised tomography pulmonary angiography (CTPA)
  • Dabigatran etexilate mesilate Pradaxa)
  • Dalteparin
  • Danaparoid
  • Danaparoid Sodium (Orgaran)
  • Enoxaparin
  • Enoxaparin Sodium (Clexane)
  • Fondaparinux (Arixtra)
  • Fragmin
  • Heparin sodium
  • Menadiol sodium phosphate
  • Protamine
  • Rivaroxaban (Xarelto)
  • Streptokinase (Streptase)
  • Tinzaparin (Innohep)
  • Urokinase (Syner-Kinase)
  • Ventilation-perfusion scan
  • Warfarin (Marevan)
By clicking on the link(s) above you will be departing from the regulatory site of Special Risks Bureau. The Special Risks Bureau (Cura Financial Services) is not responsible for the accuracy of the information contained within the linked site(s).

Common Questions

It doesn’t necessarily sound as if it will affect your application for life insurance, critical illness cover and income protection. You took the medication as a preventative and provided that you didn’t have an embolism yourself, insurers should be accepting of what happened.

Family medical history can sometimes influence a person’s application. Your sister having a pulmonary embolism will not specifically affect the application, it depends upon why she developed it and if it has been linked to any other health conditions. 

Client Reviews

Cura Financial Services has been rated 5 out of 5 based on 600 reviews.

Review by Paul and Joanne on 23rd March 2021

5 stars all around. Kathryn was brilliant - we had some unique circumstances due to my husbands occupation, and she really went the extra mile to get us the best price, and full assurance from the underwriters to the cover we were getting... she always replied really quickly with any questions i had and we will definitely reach out to her again in the future if we need more cover. - 5 

You can read more of our reviews here.

Pulmonary Embolism & Life Insurance

Dr Kathryn Knowles Phd

This page was written by Dr Kathryn Knowles Phd, an award-winning insurance adviser. To read more about Kathryn please see her bio here

Pulmonary Embolism & Life Insurance

Client Reviews

Pulmonary Embolism & Life Insurance

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