A condition where a blood clot forms in a deep leg vein, most commonly in the calf or thigh.
This can cause a partial or full blockage of the blood flow in this area. At this stage DVT is not life threatening, but it has the potential to become dangerous if complications occur. If you suspect you may have a DVT you urgently need an ultrasound of your deep veins which can be performed at Palm Clinic. If we discover a DVT, management is with blood thinning medication to prevent extension of the blood clot.
Deep Vein Thrombosis becomes particularly dangerous if the blood clot that occurred in the deep leg vein begins to move through the body. The clot can dislodge from the leg vein and flow up to attach itself to an artery in the lung. This is called a Pulmonary Embolus and can be a life threatening condition. Symptoms include chest pain, shortness of breath and coughing blood.
Clot formation tends to occur when the blood flow is restricted in a vein. The decreased flow and poor circulation can have a number of causes. No one is immune to the risk of DVT however there are individuals who are considered "high-risk".
You may be at risk if you:
* Those with one or more of these conditions (marked with an asterisk) should seek medical advice before travelling and choosing appropriate compression hosiery.
People taking long haul flights (over 4 hours) can take a number of precautions to help reduce the risk of getting Deep Vein Thrombosis:
A serious complication of varicose veins. Ulcers are best treated by treating the underlying varicose veins.
Varicose ulcers are a major problem for some Varicose Vein sufferers. The venous leg ulcers can require constant dressings and take weeks to months to heal causing huge inconvenience for patients and enormous cost for the health system. It is important that the cause of the varicose ulcers is treated, namely the abnormal varicose veins.
The best treatment for varicose ulcers is therefore Radio Frequency Ablation (RFA) or Ultrasound Guided Sclerotherapy (UGS) of the varicose veins. This restores the normal venous circulation through the deep veins and normalises nutrition in the skin which allows healing of the ulcers. Management of the ulcers before treatment of the varicose veins consists of compression hosiery and regular dressings but it is best to start treatment of the varicose veins as soon as possible. Generally the ulcers will heal within a few weeks of treating the varicose veins.
Treatment of the underlying varicose veins, and therefore the ulcers, is covered by all major insurance companies such as Southern Cross, Sovereign, NIB (formerly Tower), Unimed and others. Palm Clinic is an affiliated provider to Southern Cross Healthcare and a First Choice provider for NIB.
If you have visible varicose veins, or symptoms of varicose veins (aching, tired or heavy legs when standing) then the most likely reason for the leg swelling is the varicose veins themselves.
Varicose veins are ‘incompetent’, meaning they do not drain your leg effectively, leading to a build up of fluid in the feet and lower leg. This will often get worse over the course of the day and be relieved by elevation of the leg. There are other causes for swelling in the leg(s), so it is important that you are assessed by a Doctor to exclude these.
In most cases treatment of the Varicose Veins will resolve the leg swelling. The gold-standard for treatment of varicose veins is Radio Frequency Ablation (RFA), if you are not a candidate for this treatment then Ultrasound Guided Sclerotherapy (UGS) is a good option.
An alternative to active treatment is to wear Compression Stockings. This is usually a temporary measure, as most patients don’t like to wear compression stockings through the warmer months.
The major causes of leg swelling are listed below:
An initial assessment of leg swelling will include a leg ultrasound at Palm Clinic to confirm or exclude venous incompetence. If this is confirmed then treatment will be offered for your varicose veins which will usually resolve the leg swelling.
Treatment of varicose veins for leg swelling is covered by medical insurance. Palm Clinic is an affiliated provider to Souther Cross Healthcare for leg swelling caused by varicose veins. Palm Clinic is also a First Choice provider for NIB (formerly Tower) Insurance.
Please note that individual results may vary from patient to patient, and the information provided on our website is only a guidance to the possible results.