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Woman sitting on beach with tired legs - could it be venous insufficiency?Venous insufficiency or chronic venous insufficiency is caused when a person’s circulatory system – the system which circulates the blood through the body – is not working properly.

When the heart beats, it pumps oxygen-rich blood through the arteries to the rest of the body. Then the veins take the deoxygenated blood (after the oxygen has been distributed) and send it back to the heart to be oxygenated again.

A person with venous insufficiency is not able to have the deoxygenated blood moved back to the heart properly. This is generally because of faulty valves inside the veins. If the valves are not working, deoxygenated blood falls back down (away from the heart) instead of being pumped to the heart. This causes pooling of blood in the veins, generally in the legs and feet.

It is estimated that nearly 40 percent of Americans have venous insufficiency. Symptoms include tired and aching legs, swelling in lower legs and feet, and varicose veins. It can also lead to skin discoloration and pain.

Are You At Risk?

People at risk for venous insufficiency:

  • Have a family history of the condition
  • Have a history of blood clots
  • Have varicose veins
  • Those who are pregnant
  • Those who are overweight and obese
  • Those who smoke
  • Those who sit or stand for long periods of time.

Beebe Vascular Treats Venous Insufficiency

If you are concerned that you might be at risk for venous insufficiency, be sure to move regularly, drink plenty of water to keep blood fluid, and eat a healthy diet to keep your body in good shape.

If you or a family member have venous insufficiency, Beebe Vascular can help.

There are several ways to treat the condition, including:

  • Medications such as diuretics, inflammation-reducing medications, or blood thinners
  • Wearing compression stockings to improve blood flow
  • Elevating the legs above the heart
  • Procedures to fix the veins such as ablation, sclerotherapy, or phlebectomy
  • Procedures to repair faulty valves such as implanting a stent

Talk to your doctor about seeing a vascular specialist with Beebe Vascular. Beebe Vascular holds free vein screenings monthly. Call to register or to make an appointment: (302) 644-4954.