If you have lived with vein disease for any amount of time, you know that the persistent swelling, discomfort, and varicose veins are difficult to live with. However, there are complications associated with vein disease that make this condition much more than unsightly and uncomfortable. Your Covington varicose vein doctor will tell you that venous insufficiency increases your risk of deep vein thrombosis, a serious type of blood clot that can have potentially fatal consequences.
What the best vein doctors in Covington know about deep vein thrombosis
Deep vein thrombosis (DVT) occurs when a blood clot (known as a thrombus) forms in a vein that lies deep in the leg. Such clots, which can form when poorly circulating blood congeals to create a mass, have a tendency to slow blood flow. The real danger, however, occurs if such a clot breaks off of the vein wall and is carried away into the bloodstream. Now referred to as an embolus, a mobile clot can cause massive damage if it reaches the wrong part of the body.
If an embolus reaches a major organ, particularly the lungs or the brain, it can interfere with blood and nutrient supply. Deep vein thrombosis can lead to a stroke, but the condition it is most associated with is pulmonary embolism. Pulmonary embolism is a life-threatening condition that requires immediate medical attention, so it is important to be aware of its symptoms: shortness of breath, a bloody cough, and chest pain.
Although prompt action can save your life in the event of a pulmonary embolism, addressing blood clots before they cause damage is the most effective course of action. Unfortunately, in about half of all cases deep vein thrombosis does not have any symptoms at all. This makes it extremely difficult to detect. Louisiana vein doctors suggest regular venous screenings as a method to identify and treat DVT before it causes complications. These screenings are particularly important if you have risk factors for DVT, including being overweight or obese, having a blood clotting disorder, smoking, and being pregnant.
Another effective way to reduce the risk of DVT is to create an environment that supports healthy circulation. Regular exercise helps to keep blood moving and reduce the risk of clots. If you travel often, wearing compression stockings helps to keep blood moving. Quitting smoking, managing your weight, and taking regular breaks to get up and walk around if you work a desk job are also effective methods to reduce your risk of clots.
Finally, make an appointment at one of the best New Orleans vein treatment centers to ensure your circulation is as it should be. During a venous screening your doctor will learn more about your medical and family history and conduct non-invasive tests to gain a better understanding of your condition. He will then advise you on any treatments that might be necessary as well as help you build a plan to reduce your risk of dangerous clots.
Deep vein thrombosis is a serious condition, but by taking preemptive steps you can reduce the risk of complications. To better understand how blood clots might be affecting your life, we encourage you to schedule a consultation with Dr. Randall S. Juleff. To set up an appointment, or to have any of your questions about deep vein thrombosis answered, contact our office. A knowledgeable staff member would be happy to help you learn more.