economy class syndrome
(i.CON.uh.mee clas sin.drum, -drohm) n. A form of phlebitis in which a blood clot forms in the lower leg after prolonged immobility in a cramped space.

Example Citation:
In fact, phlebitis is quite common, the result of immobility because of an injury or traveling in a confined space, like a coach seat on a crowded flight. So many travelers are turning up with phlebitis that it is becoming known as "economy class syndrome."
—Eleanor Clift, "Flying Toward Phlebitis," The Washington Post, September 2, 1997

This phrase first appeared in the subtitle of an article published in the medical journal The Lancet on August 26, 1988. The title is "Air Travel and Thrombotic Episodes: The Economy Class Syndrome," and it was written by Dr. John M. Cruickshank, a cardiovascular consultant to Imperial Chemical Industries, Dr. Richard Gorlin of Mount Sinai Medical Center, New York, and Dr. Bryan Jennett, a neurosurgeon at Southern General Hospital, Glasgow. A synonym is coach-seat clot (1994).

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