Stop Feeling ‘Restless’ About Your Varicose Veins

Carrie’s legs had a mind of their own at night.  As she tried to drift into sleep, she had an overwhelming, uncontrollable urge to continually move her legs, and often it was so bad she actually had to out of bed and walk around, which sometimes, but not always, brought her some relief.  Many nights she was awakened by a sense of something crawling up her limbs, or an aching or tingling feeling.  It was absolutely driving her crazy, and she was exhausted during the day because these constant unpleasant symptoms were disrupting her sleep.  She researched her symptoms on the internet, and discovered she had “Restless Leg Syndrome.”  What she didn’t know was why.

 

Carrie sought help from Dr. Krikorian of St. Louis, who concurred with her self-diagnosis.  After ruling out various causes for her disorder, he discovered she had varicose veins on her legs, and attributed this as to why she was suffering these horrible nighttime sensations and the urgency to move.  Carrie had noticed the varicose veins, but wasn’t concerned about them  because she wasn’t one to wear shorts or skirts, and was most comfortable in slacks.  she never considered that the unsightly veins were causing her uncomfortable symptoms, but was quite relieved to know that she could do something to relieve her suffering.

 

Dr. Krikorian of St. Louis Can Kick Your Urge to Kick

 

During Carrie’s consultation with Dr. Krikorian of St. Louis, she learned that varicose veins are not only unattractive, but can also be the cause of several medical problems, such as her Restless Leg Syndrome.   After performing a complete examination of her veins, and performing an ultrasound to determine if she was a strong candidate for the removal of her blue, rope-looking veins, he recommended she have her varicose veins removed using a procedure called Radiofrequency Ablation, assuring her that this would relieve the creepy crawly feelings she experienced every night, and would soon start sleeping much better.

 

How Radiofrequency Ablation Works

 

Dr. Krikorian of St. Louis immediately made Carrie feel comfortable by reassuring her that the procedure consisted of simply using heat to close off her affected veins.  On the day of her treatment, Carrie was given just a local anesthetic.  Dr. Krikorian then inserted a catheter into her affected veins using an ultrasound as his guide, and then released bursts of radiofrequency energy into the bulging veins, shutting them down and eliminating them.  There was very little to no pain, and the only thing Carrie had to do after the procedure was  a lot of walking and wear  compression stockings for a short time as her legs healed.  The entire process was easier, and faster, then she thought possible.

 

Soon Carrie’s legs began sleeping as peacefully as she did every night.  She was astounded by the increased energy she had during the day now, as a result of getting a good night’s sleep without those unpleasant kicking interruptions.  And she received an unexpected bonus after her procedure — Carrie’s legs looked so great she had the urge to start wearing shorts and skirts everyday!

Nothing Swell About Leg Swelling

Rachel was buying shoes last month, and was dismayed to discover her normal size 7 was too tight.  She had to go up to a size 8, which she has never been in her life.  She was curious, because it wasn’t a hot, humid day, she wasn’t retaining water, nor was she taking any medications that commonly cause swelling as a side effect.  Over the following weeks, she noticed that her ankles and calves were frequently swollen, and her legs were starting to feel itchy and achy.   Rachel had never had this problem before, and she was concerned enough to go see her doctor, who after doing an examination and ruling out heart failure, kidney failure and liver failure, as well as an blood clots in her legs, referred her to see a vein specialist.

 

Rachel’s doctor referred her to Dr. Krikorian of St. Louis.  She immediately liked his kind, compassionate “bedside manner,” and the way he made her feel like she was his only patient.  He examined her, asked her many questions about her health, and ran some tests, and finally concluded Rachel was suffering from  chronic venous insufficiency, which he told her meant the veins in her legs were not properly pumping blood, causing the edema in her ankles and lower legs.

 

What Exactly is Venous Insufficiency?

 

Venous Insufficiency happens when a vein is partly blocked, or blood begins leaking around the valves located in the veins.  There are certain risk factors that make this disease more common in some patients:

 

  • Aging
  • Female
  • Obesity
  • Pregnancy
  • Standing or sitting for long periods of time
  • Being tall
  • Genetic factors

 

Rachel was in her 50s, fairly tall and sat at a desk all day working on a computer.  Dr. Krikorian of St. Louis explained to her that he also was seeing the development of varicose veins in her legs, which she had noticed a while ago, but never attributed them to anything more than something unsightly she had to deal with.  He then discussed options for treatment, concluding that for Rachel, the best course of treatment was Endovenous Laser Ablation.

 

Dr. Krikorian of St. Louis Uses Recent FDA-Approved Treatment

 

Endovenous Laser Ablation, also referred to as EVLT, has a 98% success rate treating varicose veins and venous insufficiency.  Dr. Krikorian of St. Louis used a local anesthetic to numb the legs, and then using an ultrasound as guidance, inserted a laser fiber into Rachel’s abnormal veins.  When Dr. Krikorian activated this laser, the affected veins were sealed and then absorbed into her body.

 

The entire procedure took about one hour, and Rachel was relieved there was no downtime and she could resume her normal activities the next day – in fact he encouraged her to actually increase her walking to help her heal.  Rachel is extremely grateful to Dr. Krikorian of St. Louis for so easily ridding her of not only her ugly varicose veins, but relieving her of her bothersome swelling and pain.  And the next time she went shoe shopping – it was back to size sevens!

Varicose Veins Are More Than Just Ugly

Varicose Veins Are More Than Just Ugly

 

The first thing many people conjure in their minds when hearing ‘varicose veins’ is grandmothers with  bulging bluish veins popping out of their legs – yikes!  A common assumption perhaps, but the truth is anyone can become a victim of this problem, even men.  Typically viewed as an unsightly cosmetic issue, many people don’t realize untreated varicose veins are a very serious health hazard.  Dr. Krikorian of St. Louis, who treats this condition as both cosmetic and medical, urges patients to have any varicose veins evaluated immediately.

 

Varicose veins are definitely unattractive – swollen, blue or purple, creating a three dimensional map of twisted, jagged roads – cause sufferers to shun shorts and skirts and be forever beholden to long pants.  That’s no way to live, of course, but more importantly, simply covering up these ugly veins could be covering up a serious health problem.  Varicose veins occur when one-way valves inside veins that move blood toward the heart, become weakened, or damaged.  This causes blood to back up in the vein and start to pool, which results in swelling.  This is what gives varicose veins that bulging, raised appearance.  When blood pools in a vein that runs close to the skin, it can sometimes lead to a clot.  These clots are not very serious, though are painful.  Other clots, however, can move to a deeper vein, which is known as Deep Vein Thrombosis.  If this kind of clot becomes loose and travels to the lungs, it can cause a pulmonary embolism, which often can be fatal.   Dr. Krikorian of St. Louis offers several treatments for potentially dangerous veins.

 

The stereotype of only little old ladies having varicose veins is false.  Although increasing age does strengthen a person’s chances, heredity is also a factor, as is pregnancy.  People who frequent careers that force them to constantly stand, such as nurses, bartenders, retail salespeople and waitresses, also have a high risk.  However, those who sit down a great deal of the time without getting up to move around, are also at a greater risk, as are people who are overweight.  Extra weight puts extra pressure on veins.

 

Symptoms That Should Send You Quickly Running To Dr. Krikorian of St. Louis

 

Varicose veins can also be a warning sign to a quite serious vein condition called venous disease, or venous insufficiency.   Sometimes varicose veins will start to seriously swell, and cause a patient extreme pain.  Over a period of untreated time, these veins can cause hyperpigmentation, which is a darkening of the skin on the legs.  Also, itching or a burning feeling may occur, as well as cramping, which can be a warning of a blood clot.

 

Although vanity may be one of the most popular reasons to inquire about varicose vein removal treatments with Dr. Krikorian of St. Louis, your health should be the priority.  If varicose veins start to appear on your legs, be aware that no matter how ugly, they pose a much uglier risk – serious health problems.

Too Many Pounds Can Cause Too Many Vein Problems

Too Many Pounds Can Cause Too Many Vein Problems

 

Answering yes to the question ‘Do you want fries with that?’ can have a devastating effect on your health.  Obesity has become such an epidemic that it’s currently estimated just shy of 2 billion people in the world are overweight.  This trend, sadly, is rising.  People are eating way more than recommended serving portions, especially when dining out.  And with more people sitting at computers than running around the block, the pounds just pile on.  When a person carries extra weight, it really puts a great amount of pressure on the body, and it takes a tremendous pounding.  The legs take the worst beating, which can result in a slew of medical problems, and sometimes, when left untreated, even death.   One of these leg problems is called venous insufficiency, and it relates to bad veins.

 

Obesity can sometimes cause certain vein problems, such as venous insufficiencies and varicose veins, and most definitely exacerbates them if a patient already suffers from these issues.  Dr. Krikorian of St. Louis makes treating these issues a priority, before the vein problems develop into life-threatening areas.   When venous insufficiency or varicose veins go left untreated, especially in obese patients, it can lead to some very serious problems, such as sores on the skin, leg ulcers, bleeding, and Deep Vein Thrombosis.  When leg ulcers become too severe, or do not get treated, it affects the circulation in the leg, and often a skin graft may have to be performed on the damaged tissue.  Deep Vein Thrombosis is extremely dangerous, and can create a blood clot, which if travels to the lungs, is almost always fatal.

 

Obesity vs. Vein Problems – A Vicious Cycle

 

As the obesity trend continues to increase, so will vein problems.  Losing the extra weight can definitely release the pressure on the legs.  Exercise is highly recommended to stimulate the dropping of pounds, which will lessen the symptoms your vein problems are causing, such as swelling, discoloration of the skin, itching and burning, nighttime leg cramping and restless legs, and of course, the pain.  The problem here, however, is the pain these patients are experiencing is the very thing that makes exercising too difficult to participate in.  Dr. Krikorian, the leading St. Louis Vein Doctor,  offers many non-invasive procedure options to treat venous insufficiency and varicose veins.

 

Up until 2000, the only way to treat deep varicose veins was with compression hose or vein stripping, which is an invasive and very painful procedure.  The treatments Dr. Krikorian of St. Louis uses to remove varicose veins are done right in his office.  These treatment options, including Sclerotherapy, and Radio Frequency Ablation, two of the more commonly used, result in only minimal pain or discomfort, and require no downtime.  After these treatments, obese patients will no longer suffer from the agonizing pain that used to prevent them from exercising.  Once an exercise program is established, the extra weight can be dropped, and vein problems can become a thing of the past.

Peripherical Vascular Disease: Signs and Symptoms

The Signs and Symptoms of Peripherical Vascular Disease

vascular disease

Peripherical Vascular Disease (PVD) is an umbrella term for the many diseases which affect the blood vessels in the body outside the heart. It affects the veins which flow blood to the heart and the arteries which send blood out of the heart and around the body.

The signs and symptoms can vary depending on the particular aspect of the PVD, detailed below are the most common.

Vein Diseases

The most widely reported sign of vein disease is the appearance of h3 veins. h3 veins are caused by a blockage or restriction in the blood flow. They have an obvious appearance on the skin’s surface and are usually blue or dark purple in color. They most frequently occur on the inside of the leg or back of calf and have a twisted or bulging appearance.

While h3 veins are not especially dangerous by themselves, they are an indication of an underlying problem which left untreated could progress to being extremely serious.

When chronic vein diseases develop, the veins have increasing problems sending sufficient blood back through to the heart, this causes blood to pool in the lower limbs and a number of symptoms are produced. These include;

  • Itching or burning sensations in the leg
  • Swelling of the ankles, feet and legs
  • Pain, cramping or fatigue of the legs. This is can be relieved by raising the legs and is usually more obvious when standing
  • Developing a different texture in the skin, sometimes thickening or a scaly or itchy rash
  • Ulcers developing which are slow to heal or prone to not healing at all on the lower limbs
  • In severe cases the skin of the legs develops an obviously darker tone.

Peripheral Arterial Disease (PAD)

The early signs of peripheral arterial disease of PAD can be more extensive. This is because different problems or symptoms will be exhibited according to where the blockage or blood flow restriction has occurred. For example a blockage in the brain may cause a lack of blood flow and a stroke. This can show symptoms such as weakness or numbness down one side of the body, difficulties in speaking, difficulties with coordination, problems with vision or a sudden and severe headache with no apparent cause.  It is also important to seek professional medical advice if you notice the following;

  • A bluish color tone in the skin
  • One leg feeling noticeably colder than the other
  • Weakened pulses in the leg or foot
  • Restricted toe nail growth and a decrease in leg hair growth
  • Forms of erectile dysfunction especially in diabetes sufferers
  • You should also be aware that any chest pains or discomfort, nausea or dizziness can also be common symptoms of PVD.

There are a variety of treatments available for the different aspects of PDV, but early diagnosis is imperative. If you are worried you may be experiencing symptoms of PDV, it is important to seek professional medical advice.

If you are interested in learning more or have any questions or queries regarding your own personal circumstances, then please contact us. Our staff in our St. Louis offices would be happy to be of assistance.

The Causes of Varicose Veins

Varicose Veins: The Causes

varicose veins

Varicose veins are thickened, twisted or enlarged veins which can be distinctly seen through the skin. They can appear anywhere on the body but they are most frequently seen in thighs and legs. Varicose veins can affect men or women but women tend to have a more likelihood of developing them and they have a tendency to become more prominent with age.

What Are the Causes?

There is no definitive explanation as to why varicose veins develop but it is universally accepted that they form due to damage or defective valves within the vein. The valves of the veins prevent the flow of blood from moving backwards, keeping it flowing towards the heart. When the valve isn’t performing adequately the blood flow is allowed to move backwards, causing a build-up of pressure in the vein which then forms varicosity or varicose vein.

Although there is no categorical explanation as to why <a hrefvaricose veins form, there are a number of factors which increases the risk of development. These include;

  • Genetics- Research has shown that a family history of varicose veins could indicate a natural propensity towards development. It is thought that some people naturally have a fewer amount of valves or may be disposed to have valves which cannot function correctly
  • Vein abnormalities- It has also been theorised that some people can be born with weaknesses in the walls of their veins. This may create an environment which is conducive to valves separating or developing leaks.

There are also a number of factors which may aggravate or trigger the development of varicose veins;

  • Body Weight- Carry extra weight or being obese can add more strain to the veins.
  • Pregnancy-  The development and carrying of a foetus has an associated effect of increasing the blood flow, the increased hormones can have a relaxation effect on the vein walls and the additional weight of carrying a baby can add pressure to the veins especially in the legs.
  • Strain- Constipation, chronic coughing, urinary retention or other conditions which force a person to strain for a prolonged period of time can cause an increase to the forces which are transmitted to the veins. These can also cause haemorrhoids to form, which are essentially a varicosity in the anal or rectal area.
  • Prolonged Periods of Standing Up- Research has indicated that this can be a significant factor in putting the veins in the legs under additional strain.
  • Trauma- Undergoing surgery or receiving another form of trauma to the area can interrupt the normal flow within the channels which can be a factor.

Treatment

Once a vein has developed into a varicose vein, it will not return to normal by itself. Although there are a variety of natural remedies which claim to reduce the effects of varicose veins, many lack the data to support their effectiveness. It is important to get any varicose veins examined and treated, as it may cause serious consequences.

If you are in the St Louis area and would like additional information then please contact us. We would be happy to assist you with any questions or queries you may have about the individual details of your personal circumstances.

The Causes of Deep Vein Thrombosis

Deep Vein Thrombosis

deep vein thrombosis

Deep Vein Thrombosis (DVT) occurs when blood thickens and clumps into a clot of blood within one of the deep veins in the body. This can occur in any part of the body but most commonly in the calf or thighs.

Causes of DVT

Although small clots can occur in the blood stream, these are usually as a result of a trauma or bruise on the skin and are quickly broken down and absorbed. Deep vein clots tend to be larger and carry a risk that they may break free and flow into the heart or lungs, which creates serious complications and sometimes even death.

While there is no obvious exclusive cause of DVT there are a number of factors which are known to increase the risk of development. These include;

  • Being immobile- Whether it is a result of illness or hospitalization, long haul flying or travelling or sitting for prolonged periods of time, being immobile can significantly increase the risk of development.  This can be relieved by trying to stretch or move the limbs as frequently as possible and trying to stay hydrated. If you are travelling long haul, try to walk around the cabin periodically and avoid alcohol. If you are immobile due to illness or a static work regime, you could try to rotate the ankles and move the limbs as much as you can.
  • Smoking- Being a smoker affects a great many of the body’s functions including affecting the blood flow.
  • Obesity- Being severely overweight or obese puts a greater strain on the heart and circulation.
  • Trauma- Serious injury or the after effects of invasive surgery may increase risk
  • Medications- There is a certain number of medications, such as certain forms of oral contraceptives which can increase the risk. If you are worried about this, speak to your medical care professional to see if there is an alternative medication available.

Symptoms

There are several warning signs which indicate you may be suffering from DVT. These include;

  • Swelling- this is usually obvious when comparing one leg to the other
  • Extreme tenderness – If you experience extreme tenderness in the back of the thigh or calf when standing or walking around
  • Warmth- If your skin in a specific spot feels suddenly warmer for no apparent reason
  • Redness- If a patch of redness appears with no explanation.

These symptoms can appear at any time and should be investigated by a medical professional. Your medical practitioner will conduct some non-invasive tests together with some medical history questions to ascertain whether further investigation or treatment is required.  Due to the risk of potential complications which can occur due to DVT, if you suspect you are suffering from one or more of these symptoms, it is important to seek medical advice as quickly as possible.

If you are worried about DVT or would like further information, please contact us. Our St. Louis staff would be happy to assist you with any questions or queries you may have relating to your personal circumstances.The Causes of Deep Vein Thrombosis

 

Deep Vein Thrombosis (DVT) occurs when blood thickens and clumps into a clot of blood within one of the deep veins in the body. This can occur in any part of the body but most commonly in the calf or thighs.

 

Causes of DVT

 

Although small clots can occur in the blood stream, these are usually as a result of a trauma or bruise on the skin and are quickly broken down and absorbed. Deep vein clots tend to be larger and carry a risk that they may break free and flow into the heart or lungs, which creates serious complications and sometimes even death.

 

While there is no obvious exclusive cause of DVT there are a number of factors which are known to increase the risk of development. These include;

 

  • Being immobile- Whether it is a result of illness or hospitalization, long haul flying or travelling or sitting for prolonged periods of time, being immobile can significantly increase the risk of development.  This can be relieved by trying to stretch or move the limbs as frequently as possible and trying to stay hydrated. If you are travelling long haul, try to walk around the cabin periodically and avoid alcohol. If you are immobile due to illness or a static work regime, you could try to rotate the ankles and move the limbs as much as you can.
  • Smoking- Being a smoker affects a great many of the body’s functions including affecting the blood flow.
  • Obesity- Being severely overweight or obese puts a greater strain on the heart and circulation.
  • Trauma- Serious injury or the after effects of invasive surgery may increase risk
  • Medications- There is a certain number of medications, such as certain forms of oral contraceptives which can increase the risk. If you are worried about this, speak to your medical care professional to see if there is an alternative medication available.

 

Symptoms

 

There are several warning signs which indicate you may be suffering from DVT. These include;

 

  • Swelling- this is usually obvious when comparing one leg to the other
  • Extreme tenderness – If you experience extreme tenderness in the back of the thigh or calf when standing or walking around
  • Warmth- If your skin in a specific spot feels suddenly warmer for no apparent reason
  • Redness- If a patch of redness appears with no explanation.

 

These symptoms can appear at any time and should be investigated by a medical professional. Your medical practitioner will conduct some non-invasive tests together with some medical history questions to ascertain whether further investigation or treatment is required.  Due to the risk of potential complications which can occur due to DVT, if you suspect you are suffering from one or more of these symptoms, it is important to seek medical advice as quickly as possible.

 

If you are worried about DVT or would like further information, please contact us. Our St. Louis staff would be happy to assist you with any questions or queries you may have relating to your personal circumstances.

Preventing Leg Ulcers

How to Prevent Leg Ulcers

leg ulcers

A leg ulcer is a breakage of the skin, allowing air and bacteria access to the exposed underlying tissues. While many people will recover quickly from an injury which breaks the skin, an ulcer is usually symptomatic of an underlying problem; it can be slow or difficult to heal and may produce a discharge.

There are a number of factors which can affect the risk of developing leg ulcers. There are two main types of leg ulcers; venous are due to pressure caused by an underlying problem with the veins, arterial are due to weak unhealthy skin caused by a lack of oxygen and blood flow after an arterial blockage.

Prevention of Venous Ulcers

In these cases people who are prone to varicose veins are particularly susceptible. There are a number of preventative measures which can significantly reduce the risk of development. These include

  • Avoiding standing for excessive amounts of time or prolonged periods. Also sitting with crossed legs can restrict the blood flow, so it is best to sit with both feet on the floor or elevated with a footstool
  • Exercising- Walking is extremely beneficial to increase the blood and oxygen flow around the body but especially the legs. Trying to flex the feet and ankles when sitting also enables the calf muscles to assist the blood flow in the veins.
  • Diet and Weight- Maintaining a healthy body weight helps to relieve pressure on the veins, together with a healthy balanced diet is extremely beneficial
  • Support pantyhose- There are a variety of hose, stockings and knee length socks which are beneficial for varicose vein sufferers. They are available in unisex forms and help improve circulation by pushing the blood back towards the heart.

Preventing Arterial Ulcers

People, who have suffered from a problem with their arteries, may experience a number of different symptoms. It is especially important for these people to engage in preventative measures to avoid leg ulcers. These include;

  • Cut down or give up smoking altogether. Smoking causes a variety of problems for the body, in these cases it is particularly bad for reducing the blood flow and amount of oxygen circulating through the body especially in the legs.
  • Engage in gentle or moderate exercise where possible. This will promote circulation and increase blood flow.
  • Avoiding scratches or cuts as healing will be reduced by the limited supply of oxygen and nutrients. Ulcers can develop quite quickly from even the smallest of scratches so they should be treated promptly. Ensuring sharp edges of furniture are covered and avoiding pets jumping up onto laps should help to minimize risk.
  • Extra care should be taken with the skin. Washing with warm water and a mild soap, and using an emollient on dry skin will help improve the risk of development. Care should be taken when drying the skin, doing so very gently especially between fingers and toes.

If you are worried you may be susceptible to leg ulcers or are interested in learning more, please contact us. Our St. Louis staff would be happy to assist you with any questions you may have about your own personal circumstances.

Peripherical Vascular Disease

Peripherical Vascular Disease Explained

vascular disease

PVD or peripherical vascular disease is used to categorize all the diseases which affect the blood vessels exterior to the heart. It can affect the veins which carry blood back to the heart from around the body, and the arteries which take blood from the heart around the body.

What Are the Warning Signs?

The most common early sign of vein diseases is varicose veins. These are usually easy to spot due to their appearance which is obvious above the skin’s surface. They are usually blue or dark purple and have a twisted or bulging appearance. They most commonly occur on the inside of the leg or back of the calf.

While varicose veins are not particularly dangerous in and of themselves, they are an indicator of a problem which may be underlying, which will progress over time to something worse. As a chronic vein disease develops, the veins struggle to send sufficient blood back through to the heart. This can cause blood to pool in the lower limbs and a number of symptoms are produced. These include;

  • Pain, cramping or fatigue of the legs. This is usually more obvious when standing and can be relieved by raising the legs
  • Itching or burning feelings in the leg
  • Swelling of the ankles, feet and legs
  • Different texture in the skin, sometimes thickening or developing a scaly or itchy rash
  • Ulcers developing which are slow to heal or prone to not healing at all on the lower limbs
  • In severe cases the skin of the legs develops a much darker tone.

The early signs of peripheral arterial disease of PAD can be much more varied. This is because different problems or symptoms are exhibited depending on where the blockage or blood flow restriction has occurred. For example a blockage in the brain may cause a lack of blood flow and a stroke. This can show symptoms such as weakness or numbness down one side of the body, difficulties in speaking, difficulties with coordination, problems with vision or a sudden and severe headache with no apparent cause.

You should also be aware that any chest pains or discomfort, nausea or dizziness can also be common symptoms of PVD.

Diagnosis and Treatment of PVD

To establish whether you are suffering from PVD, your medical care practitioner will conduct a number of tests, these can vary from ultrasound tests, angiograms, blood tests or even some forms of exercise tests. Which tests are used is dependent on the symptoms exhibited, but most tests are non-invasive and designed to obtain a diagnosis as quickly as possible.

There are a variety of treatments available for the different diseases, but early diagnosis is a priority, so if you are worried you may be exhibiting some symptoms of PDV, it is important to seek professional medical advice.

If you are interested in learning more or have any questions or queries regarding your own personal circumstances, then please contact us. Our staff in our St. Louis offices would be happy to be of assistance.

Deep Vein Thrombosis – Symptoms and Diagnosis

Symptoms and Diagnosis

Vein Thrombosis

Deep Vein Thrombosis or DVT is a condition in which blood clots can form within the deep veins of the body. A clot can occur when the blood becomes thicker and clumps within in one area. Deep vein clots usually occur in the calf, thigh or other parts of the leg but they can occur within other areas of the body.

Although a knock or injury may result in a bruise, this swelling it is actually a small clot in the superficial vein which is perfectly harmless and will dissipate by itself. Deep vein clots can be far more problematic as there is a risk that the clot can become dislodged and flow into the lung or heart. If this clot is of a significant size, this can cause severe complications or even death.

Common Symptoms

The symptoms of deep vein thrombosis can be very subtle. The clearest indicators are swelling or pain in the leg or lower limbs. Usually the pain or swelling is restricted so that it only affects one side.

A common site is the calf. The development of redness or swelling can indicate a problem. It will also be extremely tender when applying pressure to the back of the thigh or calf. In a case of deep vein thrombosis when comparing the affected calf with the other a significant difference will be visibly demonstrated.

However in some cases swelling is not visible but the limb feels suddenly warm for no apparent reason, feels tired or restless or you are experiencing a pain which only occurs when you are standing or walking, this could also be a symptom.

Diagnosis

If you feel you may be experiencing symptoms of a deep vein thrombosis it is important to seek professional medical advice & St. Louis Vein Treatment. Due to the risk of complications it is imperative to receive advice as quickly as possible.

Your St. Louis Vein Doctor will perform some simple non-invasive diagnostic tests or examination to ascertain whether further treatment or investigation is necessary. A quick and accurate diagnosis is a priority to ensure prompt treatment which can be essential.

Avoidance

There are a number of factors which are known to influence the occurrence of deep vein thrombosis. These include;

  • Being severely overweight or obese
  • Smoking
  • Taking of certain forms of oral contraceptives
  • Static activity such as long procedures of operation or long haul air flights or travel

Being aware of these factors can help you in minimizing the risk or avoiding the development of deep vein thrombosis. Trying to engage in regular exercise will improve your general fitness and reduce the risk. When travelling on a long haul flight, try to stretch your legs while seating and get up and walk around the cabin as frequently as possible. It is also important to stay hydrated, so drink plenty of water and try to avoid caffeine and alcohol.

If you are interested in learning more or have concerns about deep vein thrombosis please contact us. Our St. Louis staff will be happy to assist you with any questions or queries you may have.

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