Conditions & Services

Venous Disease

When there is a problem getting blood from the foot back up to the heart, it is an indication of a venous disorder. There are two types of veins in the feet and legs that work to pump blood back to the heart:

  1. Superficial veins – veins located just under the skin
  2. Deep veins – vein situated near the bones that aren’t visible when looking at the legs or feet.

 

If left untreated, venous diseases can lead to life-threatening conditions. If you think you may be suffering from a venous disorder and are in the Akron-Canton, Ohio area, please contact Ohio Foot and Ankle Center for a consultation.

What is it?

Varicose veins occur when the veins are enlarged and therefore prevented from properly maintaining blood flow. Blood then collects in the legs and feet, causing swelling. Some varicose veins are superficial, meaning they are just under the surface of the skin and can be visible.

Deep varicose veins are much more alarming. They are usually not visible, result in chronic swelling of the legs and feet, and can cause weeping sores on the the inside of the ankle.

A serious complication of blood collecting in the feet and legs is the possibility of blood clots in the veins. This can be a life-threatening situation if the clots that form in the leg travels back to the heart or lungs.

Some symptoms of venous disease include:

  • Swelling or feeling of swelling in the legs and/or ankles
  • Heaviness in the legs
  • Leg Cramps or pain
  • Discoloration of the skin
  • Skin problems such as itching, flaking or open wounds near the affected area

Am I at risk?

Anyone is at risk for venous disorders. If you have varicose veins or a familial history of varicose veins, you are particularly at risk. Some conditions such as pregnancy or obesity also contribute to vein insufficiencies. Smoking and extended periods of standing or sitting are also considered risk factors.

How is a venous disease diagnosed?

A family history, examination of the legs and feet and diagnostic testing all play important roles in the correct diagnosis of a venous disease. Ultrasound and other imaging may be used to make a determination on diagnosis and treatment. Since some venous disorders can be life-threatening, early treatment is key to a good prognosis.

For more details on venous diseases, visit the ACFAS informational website.