When you think of blood clots, most people think of brain aneurysms, not varicose veins. For most, varicose veins are thought of as a cosmetic nuisance that get ignored until it progresses. However, people often forget that varicose veins are a common sign of a serious health condition beneath the surface. They also tend to forget that this underlying issue can lead to potential risks like blood clots and venous ulcers, if left untreated. Unfortunately, many of these signs and symptoms are ignored and left to fester deep within the legs. But what if you were able to prevent blood clots before they even had the chance to develop? We explain how you can and why it’s important to act before it’s too late.
What are blood clots?
Blood has a very important and difficult task to do—it must continuously and smoothly flow across your body until your entire lifetime. However, when you’re injured, your blood must quickly shut off for preventing any spill. Blood clots are lifesaving and healthy when they prevent blood loss caused by injury. If we describe the physical appearance of a blood clot, it’s quite similar to a gel-like matter and is formed by fibrin and platelets. These clots generally repair damaged blood vessels, which can be either in an artery or vein.
The real problem arises when blood clots are formed where they aren’t required. For example, if a blood clot forms within your blood vessels, this can lead to medical emergencies caused by a stroke or heart attack. Blood clots can be formed in the blood vessel of any body part, but usually they affect legs—especially when you’re sitting for a longer period of time.
Whenever a blood clot forms in one of your deep veins located beneath your skin’s surface, then it’s called deep vein thrombosis or DVT.
How do blood clots form?
A blood clot is normally formed whenever your body gets a damaged blood vessel. Whenever a blood vessel gets damaged, platelets start to adhere to that said vessel’s cut edges. At that time, these platelets start to release chemicals that help them attract more and more platelets. That reaction leads to the formation of a platelet plug. Once this plug is formed, the external bleeding in your body stops.
Next up, small molecules—which are known as clotting factors—cause fibrin (which is a strand of blood-borne materials) to band together. That’s how the inside of a wound is sealed shut. In the end, the damaged blood vessel will heal and the clot will naturally dissolve after a couple of days.
However, the real danger arises when a clot forms inside a vein—a DVT. This kind of clot is extremely dangerous for your health, because it won’t get dissolved easily.
DVT usually forms in the deep veins of your arms or legs. Such a clot is highly dangerous because if it breaks off and becomes mobile, it can easily travel to your lungs. In most cases, DVT arises when you haven’t been moving around for quite a long time such as on a long road trip or plane flight.
Why do these clots occur in your legs?
Many people usually develop a blood clot in one or more than one deep veins of your body—usually your legs. Blood clots usually clump up in your legs when you’re resting or sitting for a long period. The deep veins, which are located in the center of legs, rely on your body’s muscles to force the blood back up to your heart and lungs.
When you don’t move for a period of time, the blood starts pooling in the lower part of your legs. However, blood clots that develop in your deep veins don’t necessarily cause any symptoms; this is why it is often noted that DVT may not cause any physical symptoms. DVT symptoms are considered the same as pain caused by vein disease. This is because underlying venous insufficiency, or vein disease, is one of the major factors that may cause a blood clot to form.
Click the button below to learn more about deep vein thrombosis and how it can pose a serious risk to your health.
How to prevent blood clots from happening?
If you’re confined to your bed because of an injury or illness or are slated for a surgery, then you may be more at risk for developing DVT. This is why, it’s important to talk to your doctor about different ways of preventing this medical condition from forming in the first place.
For many people, walking soon after their operation is finished can bring down the risk of DVT. Most of the times, doctors can prescribe anti-clotting drugs to you if you’re at a high risk for developing DVT after surgery.
Yet another option of preventing blood clots is to wear a pair of graduated compressing stockings. These knee-high socks can apply pressure to your lower legs—especially your ankles. These stockings can increase the flow of blood from your ankle toward your thigh. It is often recommended to wear these compression stockings after vein treatment if you are planning to sit or stand for long stretches of time. This can help in the healing process and lower risk of DVT.
The most effective way of preventing DVT is to get vein treatment. Vein treatment reduces the likelihood of blood clots because it fixes broken vein valves. During vein treatment, the damaged veins are closed, rerouting blood flow to healthier veins. Once the flow is rerouted, pooling will cease to occur and circulation can improve. Improved circulation helps reduce your chances of developing DVT because your legs have to work less hard to successfully pump blood from your legs back up to your heart.
Like DVT or blood clots in the vein, other venous conditions have to be treated at the earliest so that they don’t worsen. Not only does vein treatment reduce your risk of DVT, but also of venous ulcers, skin discoloration, and restless legs syndrome or RLS.
Reduce Your Risk of Blood Clots With Vein Treatment
USA Vein Clinics is a trusted vein treatment center. Our medical facility has top vascular surgeons who can perform varicose vein treatment for each patient’s individual needs. These minimally invasive procedures will help in alleviating the painfulness and discomfort caused by the symptoms of varicose veins and other vein diseases, as well as decrease your risk of blood clots.
We make it our mission to support our patients in every step of the treatment right from the initial diagnosis through the recovery plan.
Our physicians are committed to helping patients suffering from vein conditions lead a happier, healthier, more active lifestyle. Our vein doctors strive to make varicose vein treatments and spider vein treatments as stress-free and simple as possible for their patients.