Blood Clots and Varicose Veins: What You Need to Know

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While most consider varicose veins purely a cosmetic issue, that is not always the case. Varicose veins that have become painful and/or inflamed may be a signal that there is a more serious underlying condition.

What Are Varicose Veins?

Varicose veins are those enlarged, visible veins that are most commonly seen in the ankles and legs. This condition is caused by a failure or problem with the valves in the blood vessels that allow the blood to pool or back up to create varicose veins.

Common symptoms and signs of varicose veins include swelling, pain, fatigue, and heaviness in the legs. These signs often accompany the look of the varicose veins that include bumpy, swollen veins that can be ropey in appearance, in addition to a blue or purple color.

Varicose veins can become increasingly painful and inflamed and can lead to superficial phlebitis. They are often associated with vein thrombosis or clots. Statistics published in the Archives of Dermatology showed an association between those with superficial phlebitis and deep vein thrombosis.

What is Deep Vein Thrombosis?

Deep vein thrombosis is a very serious condition that can lead to serious complications, and in some cases, can even be deadly. Deep vein thrombosis is a condition that causes clots in the large, deep veins of the lower leg and thighs. DVT can become serious, as there is a possibility that the clot can break off and travel to the lungs. Because of the possibility that varicose veins can lead to superficial thrombosis, which in turn can lead to deep vein thrombosis, it is important that this condition is treated early.

Says Dr. Thomas Wright of the St. Louis Laser Vein Center, “While varicose veins are usually a cosmetic condition, it is important that they are effectively treated in order to counteract any possibility of it leading to more serious medical conditions.”

Dr. Wright and his staff are knowledgeable and experienced vein experts. As such, if you are concerned about varicose veins, we invite you to schedule a consultation. We will answer your questions, as well as provide a proper diagnosis and explain possible treatments to help you and your veins stay healthy!