Venous insufficiency is a disease that affects the flow of blood in your body. Individuals who are suffering from this disease do not have a sufficient blood flow to prevent the blood from pooling in their legs. There are a lot of different disorders of the veins that can lead to venous insufficiency. However, in the majority of cases, it is caused because a person has had a blood clot or because they are fighting varicose veins. Better understanding this disease will help the person determine whether or not they should see our vascular surgeon.
The treatment that is prescribed to treat the condition varies depending on what the cause of the venous insufficiency is. Some doctors will first recommend their patients use compression stockings. If that does not fix the issue, then a vascular surgeon may be needed.
To better understand how this disease affects the body and whether or not you will need to see a surgeon who specializes in treating veins, it is good to first understand the role that arteries play in the body. Your arteries have the job of taking the blood from your heart and transporting it throughout the rest of your body.
Your veins have the job of taking blood that needs oxygen and bringing it back to your heart. There are valves inside your veins that stop the blood from back flowing. Venous insufficiency happens when your veins have a problem taking the blood from your extremities and bringing it back up to your heart. As a result, the blood will pool in your legs.
When a person has healthy veins and arteries, there is a continuous flow of blood in their body. A blood clot can lead to venous insufficiency by preventing the blood in your legs from returning back to your heart. When a person has varicose veins, their veins might be collapsed or otherwise damaged, and this also prevents the blood from traveling back to the heart. In some rare cases, patients develop venous insufficiency because the muscles in their legs responsible for pushing the blood through the veins have become weak.
Venous insufficiency happens with greater frequency in women than in men. Women who experience venous insufficiency are usually between the ages of 40 and 50, whereas men who experience it are between the ages of 70 and 80.
Individuals who are dealing with venous insufficiency may experience things like swelling in the legs; pain in the legs that gets worse when they stand; feeling that their legs itch; weak or heavy legs; or ankles and legs that have become thicker. Other symptoms would include a change in the color of your legs, especially in the areas around the ankles; the development of varicose veins; leg ulcers; and feeling that your calves are tight.
At South Texas Vein Institute in Edinburg, our skilled vascular surgeon can diagnose venous insufficiency by doing a physical examination, conducting imaging tests and performing an ultrasound. Once it is confirmed that a patient has venous insufficiency, our vascular surgeon will then begin treatment based on the underlying condition that led to the infirmity, the patient’s age, the severity of the condition and the medication the patient can tolerate.
We always try to start with conservative treatment and then take it from there. The end goal is to relieve you of your venous insufficiency. Contact us today to schedule your appointment to learn more.