Chronic Venous Insufficiency
Chronic Venous Insufficiency occurs when vein valves are unable to stop blood from flowing backwards. How dangerous is it?
What is Chronic Venous Insufficiency?`
Chronic Venous Insufficiency is a vein vascular condition in which the veins have trouble transporting blood to the heart. Our veins carry blood towards the heart; each vein has one-way valves that keep blood from flowing backward.
Chronic venous insufficiency complications occur when the Vein valves are unable to stop the blood from flowing backwards. Vein valves may malfunction from age, disease, injury, medical condition or obesity.
Disorders and diseases weaken and stretch the bicuspid vein valves disabling them from closing properly. As a result, they are unable to stop the blood from flowing backwards and pooling inside the vein.
Chronic Venous Insufficiency is a serious disorder and it should be addressed immediately. Although, it is not life threatening, it may cause pain and disability. If not cured, you may suffer symptoms such as pain, swelling, spasms, skin-irritation, discoloration, varicose veins, and leg ulcers.
Increasing blood circulation is the primary treatment for Chronic Venous Insufficiency. Traditionally, doctors prescribed compression stockings to elevate blood circulation and improve the flow of blood through veins. Recently, doctors have begun to recommend therapeutic massages to improve blood flow.
If Chronic venous Insufficiency does not respond to conventional treatments then the doctor may prescribe medication, Endovenous laser ablations, Radiofrequency ablations, Sclerotherapy, and Ligation Surgery.
Chronic Venous Insufficiency Stages
Chronic venous insufficiency has three different stages depending on the severity of the symptoms.
Stage 1. Swelling and skin discoloration describes this stage.
Stage 2. Swelling, skin discoloration, and dermatitis characterize this stage.
Stage 3. Swelling, skin discoloration, varicose veins, and ulcers characterize this stage.
Venous insufficiency can be a reason of chronic venous hypertension, a disorder characterized by high blood pressure in the veins of the legs. Blood clots or other blockages in the veins can also lead to this situation.
If left untreated, chronic venous hypertension can cause abnormalities in the capillaries within the leg nerves, causing ulceration, bump, and hyperpigmentation. This is a condition in which some areas of skin become darker than natural.
What are the Symptoms of Chronic Venous Insufficiency?
Some of the significant symptoms of venous insufficiency include:
- Heaviness, Burning, Or Dull Aching in The Legs
- Inflammation of The Legs and Ankles
- Itching or Cramping in The Legs
- Spots of Darker, Brownish Skin
- Heavier or Harder Skin on The Legs or Ankles
- Open Sores
- Blood Clots
- Varicose Veins
What Causes Chronic Venous Insufficiency?
There are several causes of Chronic Venous Insufficiency, they are:
- Deep Vein Thrombosis (DVT) – blood clot in the deep veins in your leg can damage vein valves. A blood clot may be formed by disease or injury; it acts as a barrier and stops the blood from flowing forward causing the blood to pool inside the vein.
- Phlebitis – inflammation of the veins can damage and weak vein valves.
- Lack of Exercise – Exercise increases blood circulation which decreases the risk of venous insufficiency.
- Pregnancy – pregnant women are more likely to get chronic venous insufficiency (CVI) because their veins become weak from pregnancy hormones.
- Women on Birth Control, menopause, and hormonal disorders – Women who are taking/using hormonal birth control, are going through menopause, or are suffering from hormonal disorders such as PCOS are more likely to get Chronic Venous Insufficiency because hormone imbalance damages veins.
Apart from these major causes, you may be at an increased risk of Chronic Venous Insufficiency if you:
- Have a family history of Chronic Venous Insufficiency
- Have varicose veins or spider veins
- Are overweight or obese
- You are a smoker
- You have swelling in your superficial veins
- You stand or sit in one position for a prolonged time.
What are the Treatments for Chronic Venous Insufficiency?
Chronic venous Insufficiency can be treated through non-invasive and invasive procedures.
The first non-invasive treatment is to improve blood flow better in your veins to keep them healthy. Doctors recommend the following to improve blood circulation:
Avoid sitting or standing for a long time period. If you have to sit for a while, stretch or shake your legs, feet, and ankles often to help your blood flow. If you stand a lot, take breaks to relax, sit and, put your feet up. This will be helpful for lower pressure in your leg veins. Compression stockings can also be recommended in this stage.
Regular exercise helps your body maintain a healthy blood circulation. Walking is a good option to make your veins stronger and increase blood flow.
Compression Stocking and Elevation:
Doctors recommend compression stocking to increase blood circulation. Doctors may also ask you to keep your feet elevated to keep the blood from flowing backwards.
If Chronic venous Insufficiency is still not showing signs of improvement then doctors may have to take other measures, they include:
The Doctor will recommend medication to treat the underlying cause of Chronic Venous Insufficiency. If you have blood clot(s) then the doctor may prescribe blood thinners. If you have swelling and inflammation in your veins then the doctor may prescribe antibiotics. If Kidney disease or heart disorders are linked to venous insufficiency then the doctor may prescribe diuretic medicine which removes excess fluid from the body through the kidneys.
Endovenous Laser Treatment:
A non-invasive procedure in which damaged veins are sealed using laser. It is an outpatient procedure with effective and lasting results.
A non-invasive procedure in which damaged veins are sealed using high-frequency radio waves. It permanently closes damaged veins and blood continues to circulate through alternative veins.
Sclerotherapy is a simple procedure in which the doctor inserts a solution or foam into the damaged veins to close it. The solution scars the vein and closes it down. Blood circulation continues through alternative veins.
Phlebotomy is a procedure in which excess blood is drained from the damaged vein(s). The doctor or surgeon will insert a needle into the damaged vein to draw excessive blood out. It is a useful but temporary solution.
Ligation and Stripping:
High Litigation and Vein Stripping is a surgical procedure in which a surgeon will tie the damaged vein to cut it off from the deep vein and then remove it surgically.
Chronic Venous Insufficiency Treatments in New Jersey
Are you suffering from Chronic Venous Insufficiency? If yes, then don’t worry! Now you can get effective CVT treatment from Complete Medical Wellness (CMW) in NJ and NY! CMW is a multi-specialty medical facility with an excellent Vein Vascular department in 7 accessible locations throughout NJ and NY.
Our Vein Vascular department is led by Dr. Nirav Patel, the most sought-after vein vascular specialist in the tri-state area. Our board-certified and expert surgeons will treat your CVT so that you don’t have to suffer pain anymore.
Call CMW today to schedule a FREE initial consultation with our expert vein vascular surgeons.