Varicose Veins and Blood Clots
Are varicose veins and blood clots related? Learn their symptoms, types, and risk factors. Reduce blood clot risks with advanced minimally invasive varicose veins treatments at Supreme Vascular and Interventional Clinic.
What Are Varicose Veins?
Varicose veins are twisted and swollen veins that can appear anywhere on the body, although they most commonly appear in the legs. These veins usually cause mild symptoms, but if they’re left to progress, they can cause some serious and sometimes life-threatening symptoms. These veins develop as a result of a breakdown in the valves in the legs that carry blood from the legs to the heart, and vice versa.
What are Blood Clots?
Blood clots are clusters of blood that are no longer liquid, but they’re gel-like or semi-solid. The blood clots as part of the healing process whenever an injury occurs. In some cases, blood clots can form inside veins, and once this happens, the clots are unable to dissolve on their own. Are blood clots dangerous? They can be depending on where they form. A serious complication of deep vein thrombosis (DVT) is pulmonary embolism. This can be life threatening and happens when a piece of the blood clot moves to your lungs.
Are Varicose Veins a Warning Sign of Blood Clots?
In some of the more severe cases of varicose veins, blood clots can sometimes form inside the swollen veins. This is diagnosed as a condition called deep vein thrombosis, (DVT). However, varicose veins aren’t necessarily a warning sign of blood clots, although the symptoms of each condition are similar. Also, it has been discovered that individuals with varicose veins have a higher susceptibility to developing DVT. Read more in our informative blog post, “Deep Vein Thrombosis: Symptoms, Signs, and Treatment”.
Symptoms of Blood Clots
Symptoms of blood clots depend on where the clot is located. A blood clot that has formed in the brain is a type of stroke (thrombotic) and can cause several symptoms like severe headaches, reduced consciousness, stiffness in the neck, vomiting, and more. Understand the different types of stroke such as ischemic stroke when a blood clot (thrombus) occurs. If the blood clot occurs in the lungs, then symptoms will include shortness of breath, chest pain, and coughing up blood.
If a person develops a blood clot in the legs, they may notice the following symptoms:
- Severe leg pain that doesn’t subside
Types of Blood Clots
Superficial blood clots or phlebitis are blood clots that occur just underneath the skin. These types of clots don’t typically enter the bloodstream, though they can cause significant pain, which requires treatment.
Deep vein thrombosis (DVT) is a potentially deadly clot condition that occurs in the primary veins of the legs, thighs, or pelvis. It’s also referred to as venous thrombosis, and these blood clots can become life-threatening if they become dislodged and travel to certain areas of the body.
A pulmonary embolism (PE) is what occurs when a DVT travels from the leg to the lung, where it can become trapped. PEs cause damage to the lungs and block blood flow, which can result in death if not treated promptly.
Risk Factors for Varicose Veins
Although anyone can develop varicose veins, some people with certain risk factors are more susceptible to them. Some risk factors for varicose veins include:
Just like with varicose veins, anyone can develop blood clots, but some people are more likely to develop them than others. Some risk factors for blood clots are extended periods of sitting, hospitalization, obesity, pregnancy, heredity, and organ transplant, among others. Find out more about the six stages of varicose veins.
Minimally Invasive Procedures for Varicose Vein Treatment
Not all patients with varicose veins need open surgery, and there are some minimally invasive procedures to treat this condition. They include:
- Conservative medical management including compression socks – Compression socks can effectively treat the earlier stages of varicose veins in some cases
- Laser endovenous treatment (EVLT) – When undergoing an EVLT, a heated laser is used to close off damaged veins and promote healing. Blood flow is redirected to other veins, as treated veins will no longer be functional.
- Radiofrequency endovenous ablation (RFA) – This treatment involves the use of energy to cauterize damaged veins, and then scar tissue is formed
- Venous avulsions – This procedure entails the removal of the damaged veins through tiny incisions.
- Sclerotherapy – This therapy involves the injection of a special solution into the affected veins, which irritates the blood vessels and encourages healing and improvement in their appearance.
Varicose Veins Treatment at Supreme Vascular and Interventional Clinic
As you can see, there are many similar symptoms between varicose veins and blood clots. Despite the similarities, there are some key differences between these two conditions. If you’re seeking an alternative to traditional treatment for blood clots or varicose veins, you might be interested in learning more about our specialized varicose veins clinic in Singapore. Our experienced varicose veins specialist, Dr. Manish Taneja, has been performing vascular and interventional treatments for strokes, blood clots, varicose veins, and more since 1995. If you’d like to schedule an appointment at the Supreme Vascular and Interventional Clinic, contact us to arrange your appointment.
Am I at Risk of Varicose Veins, Spider Veins, or Deep Vein Thrombosis?
The appearance of varicose and spider veins on your body is nothing of immediate concern. If there are symptoms associated with them, schedule a visit with your doctor to diagnose and treat varicose veins. Spider veins, varicose veins, and deep vein thrombosis (DVT) can occur on individuals with all body types, genders, and ages. The following demographics may have a higher chance of experiencing them.
- Those who are overweight (therefore, maintain a healthy weight to reduce the pressure)
- Pregnant women
- Individuals between the ages of 40 and 80
- Those who are inactive/not exercising (even sitting or standing for long periods)
- Frequent flyers
- Those who have had surgery or leg trauma
Assessment of Varicose Veins
Clinical examination and ultrasound doppler scan are most important tools in assessment and deciding management of varicose veins. This takes about 15-20 minutes to do and is usually done in the clinic itself.
Treatment of Varicose Veins
There are various techniques available to treat varicose veins depending on clinical presentation. These include:
- Conservative medical management including compression socks
- Laser endovenous treatment (EVLT)
- Radio-frequency endovenous ablation (RFA)
- Clarivein endovenous treatment
- VenaSeal endovenous closure system
- Microwave endovenous ablation
- Open surgery
- Venous avulsions
- Cryolaser and cryosclerotherapy
What are the Advantages of Minimally Invasive Treatments?
- No major surgery
- No or minimal visible scars
- Quick recovery
- Same day admission and discharge
- Clinic based treatments
Learn more about “Spider Veins: Types, Symptoms, and Treatment”. Although they might be a cosmetic concern, they can also lead to serious health issues. You might also be interested to find out more on our blog post, “Deep Vein Thrombosis: Signs, Symptoms, and Treatment” about the difference between DVT and varicose veins.
Consult a Vascular Specialist for Your Varicose Veins and Spider Veins
Dr. Manish Taneja, a certified vascular and varicose veins specialist in Singapore, has extensive experience in the treatment of all vascular interventions and looks after venous diseases like varicose veins, spider veins, and reticular veins. Come in for a further evaluation and contact us to arrange your varicose veins appointment today.
Varicose Veins Resources
Keep Varicose Veins and Spider Veins at Bay
If your legs feel sore persistently, achy when standing long periods, or maybe you notice blue or purple veins even bulging in the area, chances are these symptoms of varicose veins and spider veins could lead to other serious venous diseases such as Deep Vein Thrombosis (DVT), Chronic Venous Insufficiency (CVI), or Leg Swelling due to increased pressure forming larger blood clots over time. Varicose veins are fully treatable with minimally invasive procedures and treatments offering minimal downtime and quick recovery preventing further complications. Long term effects of untreated varicose veins can hinder your daily life and impact your health.
The Supreme Vascular and Interventional Clinic in Singapore is here to diagnose and treat varicose veins smoothening patients’ experience to find relief and comfort. As a vascular and interventional radiology specialist based in Singapore, Dr. Manish Taneja looks after a spectrum of venous diseases, peripheral vascular malformations, and peripheral arterial disease. Dr. Manish Taneja also has extensive experience in performing all vascular interventions, non-vascular interventions and interventional oncology procedures.
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