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Chronic Venous Insufficiency

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Healthy leg veins have valves that keep blood flowing to the heart. Chronic venous insufficiency (CVI) develops when the valves stop working properly and allow blood to flow backward (i.e. reflux) and pool in the lower leg veins. This pooling is called statis, which makes it difficult for blood to return to the heart from the legs (although sometime it can occur in the arms).

CVI is also known as Phlebitis, Post-Thrombotic Syndrome, Venous Insufficiency, Venous Leg Ulcer or Venous Reflux Disease.

CVI, one of the underlying causes of venous ulcers, is a potentially serious and progressive medical condition. Symptoms can worsen over time if left untreated.

Chronic venous insufficiency (CVI) may be due to valve dysfunction (usually hereditary) or due to valve destruction after a deep vein thrombosis (DVT) or blood clot.
Chronic venous insufficiency may cause the following symptoms in your legs.
– Varicose veins
– Bulging veins
– Aching
– Swelling
– Cramping
– Heaviness or tiredness
– Itching
– Open skin sores
– Restlessness
– Skin discoloration
Who is at Risk?

Chronic venous insufficiency (CVI) is a fairly common condition that may affect up to 40% of the U.S. population. It is more common in women, especially after multiple pregnancies, and in people who are middle-aged or older. Chronic Venous Insufficiency is 2 times more prevalent than coronary heart disease (CHD) and 5 times more prevalent than peripheral arterial disease (PAD).

Chronic venous insufficiency (CVI) can affect anyone; gender and age are factors that may increase your risk. For example, women older than 50 are more likely than others to develop CVI. Other factors that may increase your risk, include:

– Family history
– Sedentary lifestyle
– Trauma
– Prolonged standing
– Obesity or excess weight
– Current or previous pregnancies
– Smoking
For mild forms of Chronic venous insufficiency (CVI), lifestyle changes may be recommended to control existing symptoms and prevent others. The following measures may help prevent varicose veins and CVI:
– Manage body weight
– Exercise regularly, focusing on exercises that work your legs (run or walk)
– Elevate your legs whenever possible
– Avoid prolonged standing or sitting
– Avoid clothes that are tight around the waist, groin or legs
– Avoid shoes that limit use of calf muscles (i.e., high heels)
– Eat a diet low in salt and rich in high-fiber foods

Varicose veins are often misunderstood as a cosmetic problem and many people living with them do not seek treatment. The good news is that there are minimally invasive treatment options available for varicose veins and Chronic venous insufficiency (CVI).

For appropriate cases, Main Line Spine utilizes the ClosureFast™ procedure for treating Chronic Venous Insufficiency. This therapy utilizes segmental radiofrequency ablation to deliver uniform heat to close the vein. Once sealed, blood is directed to nearby healthy veins. The ClosureFast™ procedure has been shown to deliver clinically demonstrated results with improved patient comfort and rapid recovery. It is also designed for patient comfort and a quick return to work.

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