Chronic venous insufficiency (CVI) causes symptoms seen on or felt in the arms or legs. With CVI, your symptoms may be mild or severe. As the condition progresses, current symptoms may get worse, and new symptoms may also appear.
Watch out for these signs of venous insufficiency, since ignoring the problem does come with risks.
What is Chronic Venous Insufficiency
CVI occurs when the valves in leg veins malfunction. After blood is pushed upward from the vein, a healthy vein valve will close. This is to prevent blood from flowing backward. But malfunctioning valves have trouble with this mechanism. So instead of pushing the blood back to the heart, the blood flows back into the veins and pools in them. The increasing pressure in the veins can cause more vein valves to malfunction. Therefore, early treatment is vital to put a stop to this problem.
Men and women can have this condition, but it disproportionately affects women. Patients with chronic venous insufficiency have a reduced risk of complications, and better outcomes from treatment if the physician catches the condition early. Fortunately, CVI does have warning signs.
Signs To Watch Out For
Chronic venous insufficiency is highly treatable when caught early. Seek a vein doctor if you see or experience one or more of the following:
- Leg pain when standing or walking that is relieved by rest and elevation
- A tingling and burning sensation in the leg
- Frequent leg cramps
- A feeling of legs getting heavy
- Itchy legs
- Varicose veins – swollen, twisted veins that are either blue or purple
- Swelling in the leg, ankles, or feet; if you press on the swelling, your touch leaves behind an indentation
- Leg discoloration (skin turns brown) and skin texture changes (rough, scaly, or leathery appearance); this sign indicates advanced chronic venous insufficiency
Untreated chronic venous insufficiency can become dangerous, as CVI can also be a symptom of a serious health condition. For instance, deep vein thrombosis (DVT), which is a blood clot in the leg, can cause venous insufficiency. It could be what’s causing a blockage in blood flow. Blood clots are life-threatening as they can travel to your lungs. Chronic venous insufficiency as a primary problem can cause venous stasis ulcers to develop. At this point, it means the valves have become damaged. Once these ulcers develop, the condition becomes very hard to treat. Venous stasis ulcers are debilitating.
Vein Clinic in Boca Raton, FL
A vein doctor or vascular surgeon is the doctor to see to receive treatment for chronic venous insufficiency. A vein doctor will diagnose CVI through a review of your medical history and a physical exam, and medical imaging techniques such as ultrasound.
If you suspect venous insufficiency, trust our vein specialists at Advanced Heart and Vascular Institute with your vein health. Our vein doctors have the skill and experience to provide expert treatment for your vein problem and reduce your risk for complications.
To schedule an appointment with one of the top vein doctors in Boca Raton, call our clinic today at (561) 235-5621 or use our convenient appointment request form. We look forward to serving you in our Boca Raton vein clinic.