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Facts About Venous Reflux

What is Venous Reflux?

Venous reflux is a condition where the blood in the veins backs up. It is also a common contributor to vascular disease. It is also the cause of many symptoms of vascular insufficiency.

Veins are the blood vessels that return blood from the heart. With normal circulation, blood goes up the legs to the lungs to be re-oxygenated, then back to the heart. Veins in the legs have valves that act as one-way doors. If the valves become damaged or weakened, the blood begins to pool or back up.

Some symptoms of venous reflux include:

  • Pain
  • Reticular veins – thin, red veins on the surface of the skin
  • Varicose veins
  • Edema – Swelling in the legs and ankles
  • Venous stasis ulcers – slow/non-healing wounds around the ankles and legs
  • Changes in skin color

Diagnosing Venous Reflux

To diagnose this condition, a physician will go over your medical history and do a physical exam. He or she will note any changes in skin color, texture, and temperature. Any spider or varicose veins, as well as edema or ulcerations will be noted. Your pulse will be checked at various points of your circulatory system.

If additional testing is required, the first tests will be non-invasive vascular tests. Ultrasound is the most common diagnostic tool for diagnosing venous reflux. Ultrasound testing produces images that will let the doctor how well your valves are working.

Treating Venous Reflux

Treatments can include lifestyle changes and choices. Maintaining a healthy weight and diet, as well as exercising regularly can help promote healthy circulation. Compression garments are often suggested in conjunction with other treatments. These garments can help maintain good blood flow.

If you have a severe case of venous reflux, there are several therapies that can help. These include

  • Ablation, which uses heat to destroy the affected vein
  • Laser therapy uses laser energy to eliminate the vein
  • Sclerotherapy uses a chemical to collapse the vein

Dr. Thomas Wright, medical director of the Laser Lipo and Vein Center says, “Diagnosing vein disease early is very important in eliminating further, more serious vein issues from occurring.”

If you feel you may need to seek diagnosis or treatment of potential vein disease, please contact us at Laser Lipo and Vein Center. Dr. Wright and his staff are knowledgeable and experienced all areas of vein disease and its treatments.