Blood clots: Are you at risk?
Blood clots can happen to anyone; in fact literature suggests that every minute approximately one person will be diagnosed with a blood clot in the United States.
What causes blood clots?
Blood clots are formed when blood fails to get pumped back to the heart.Blood is circulated back to your heart through the venous systems in your body. These veins are a one way system containing valves which allow the flow of blood to return back to your heart. In healthy veins, these valves open and close like western saloon doors, preventing the blood from pooling in your legs. In the case of venous insufficiency, these veins become larger than normal, these valves can’t work, the blood starts to “hang out” in your legs and form clots.Blood
Could the veins I see on my legs represent a more serious underlying issue?
Visible veins, especially combined with symptoms may be indicative of an underlying vein issue such as medical venous disease; or venous insufficiency. Patients with venous insufficiency may experience any or all of the following symptoms:
- Skin changes, including discoloration
- throbbing sensations
- leg cramping and/ or leg heaviness
Risk factors for venous insufficiency are family history, hormones, and pregnancy. Any one of the three can predispose someone to venous disease, which could put them at an increased risk of a blood clot.
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