Almost 2 million Americans develop Deep Vein Thrombosis (DVT) each year. These blood clots typically arise in the legs, but can occasionally break loose and travel through the heart to the lungs with serious consequences. In fact, more people die each year from blood clots than breast cancer and HIV combined. The major risk factors include heart/respiratory failure, restricted mobility (such as with extended bedrest or long-distance travel), cancer, obesity, recent surgery, smoking, pregnancy, or inherited clotting disorders. Clots can also form in superficial veins (SVT). This is also often called phlebitis, or inflammation of the superficial veins. When this occurs in the leg, it will likely happen in a varicose vein where the blood is pooling instead of flowing up toward the heart. Although clots in the superficial veins can rarely “grow” or extend into the deep veins causing a DVT, usually they are more of an annoyance than a major health problem or significant danger.
While the number one motivation for eliminating varicose veins is to alleviate discomfort in the legs, patients who have had SVT in the past may choose to look into vein treatment options to prevent recurrence of SVT in the future.
Call Vein Centers for Excellence of Kansas City at 913-451-VEIN to schedule your free vein screening.