Varicose veins may signal potential dangerous blood clots

WHAT: March is DVT Awareness Month and Vein Clinics of America encourages people with varicose veins, particularly those that have become painful and inflamed, to visit a vein specialist.

WHY: Varicose veins are not just unsightly; they may be a signal to potential serious health issues, such as dangerous blood clots.

Varicose veins, or enlarged, visible veins near the surface of the skin, are most commonly seen in the legs and ankles. Many people with varicose veins experience pain, swelling, heaviness, and fatigue in the legs. In some cases, the leg veins may become inflamed and painful – a condition known as superficial phlebitis. Sometimes phlebitis can be associated with superficial vein thrombosis (SVT). A recent study published in Archives of Dermatology indicated that 1 in 4 patients with SVT also had a DVT. (Binder B, et al. Association between superficial vein thrombosis and deep vein thrombosis of the lower extremities. Archives of Dermatology 2009; 145(7): 753-757.)

Given the potentially serious health risks associated with some varicose veins, people experiencing swollen, painful veins should seek professional consultation with a vein specialist or Phlebologist. The Phlebologists at Vein Clinics of America are specially trained to diagnose and treat vein disorders and can help people avoid more serious complications as a result of their varicose veins. Recent advances in medical technology have made the treatment of vein disorders safer and more effective.

WHO: J. Theodore King, MD, FACPh, Medical Director of Vein Clinics of America will be available to discuss DVT and the importance of diagnosing and treating varicose veins.

HOW: Visit www.veinclinics.com or call 1-866-617-VEIN to make an appointment today.

WHAT YOU SHOULD KNOW ABOUT DVT:

  • There are approximately 600,000 new cases of DVT diagnosed in the US each year. Deep venous thrombosis mainly affects large veins that are deep inside the lower leg and thigh. DVT can be life-threatening if the clot breaks off, travels to, and lodges in the lung.
  • Symptoms of DVT can include:
    • Changes in skin color (redness, but sometimes pale) in one leg
    • Increased warmth in one leg
    • Pain in one leg
    • Tenderness in one leg
    • Swelling (edema) of one leg
  • Varicose veins can predispose an individual to superficial thrombosis which, if left untreated, can lead to deep vein thrombosis or post-thrombotic syndrome.
    • Symptoms of post-thrombotic syndrome may include persistent edema (swelling), pain, increased skin pigmentation, and ulceration.

Source:

Vein Clinics of America, Inc.

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