Other Vein Disorders
There are many vein conditions. Some, such as varicose veins, are common. Others are rare and can be dangerous if left untreated.
If you are concerned about your vein health because you’re noticing problems such as pain, discomfort, or visible changes to your skin, it’s important to consult with a vein specialist to find out what’s causing your symptoms.
A problem with your venous system — such as damaged veins or blood clots blocking blood flow — might be minor at first. But over time, it can lead to more serious issues.
While only a doctor can diagnose your vein problems, it’s still helpful to understand what might be behind your symptoms. With an understanding of venous disorders and what causes them, you can take steps to better care for your vein health.
What Conditions Affect the Veins?
Healthy circulation is the foundation of overall well-being. It helps with everything from brain functionality to wound healing. But different factors can stress our veins, causing damage, impacting our blood circulation, and opening the door to vein problems.
Some vein conditions are linked to vein disease (chronic venous insufficiency), which is a venous disorder that occurs when the leg veins don’t allow blood to flow back up to the heart properly. Vein disease is the root cause of varicose veins, spider veins, and reticular veins. It’s also linked with other issues, such as restless leg syndrome and chronic edema.
Other vein disorders have different causes, such as lifestyle factors, a blood disorder, or poor circulation.
Here’s a comprehensive list of venous conditions other than varicose veins, spider veins, and reticular veins.
- Skin ulcers
- Venous stasis dermatitis (rash)
- Corona phlebectatica
- Klippel-Trenaunay syndrome (KTS)
- Chronic edema
- Restless leg syndrome
- Deep vein thrombosis
- Superficial thrombophlebitis
- May-Thurner syndrome
- Buerger’s disease
Open Sores and Ulcers
Five to ten percent of people with varicose veins may develop open sores or ulcers, also known as venous leg ulcers. A leg ulcer is a wound caused by abnormal or damaged veins. Damaged vein valves cause the pressure inside the leg to stay elevated, which can lead to ulcers around the ankles and legs.
Venous ulcers are characterized by discolored or hardened skin. There also might be a foul-smelling discharge.
Your doctor may recommend a topical ointment to prevent or treat an infection, as well as compression stockings to support better circulation. Treating vein disease, the underlying cause of varicose veins and venous ulcers can also help to relieve ulcers and prevent them from recurring.
Venous Stasis Dermatitis (Rash)
An itchy, red rash or red dots on the shins or legs may be symptoms of venous stasis dermatitis, which is caused by poor blood circulation or blood gathering or pooling in the legs. Your doctor might recommend a topical corticosteroid to manage the itching and redness. However, your rash might not fully go away until you treat the underlying vein problems.
The medical term for skin that changes to a darker color is hyperpigmentation. If you have other symptoms of vein disease and hyperpigmentation, the discoloration is likely caused by damaged veins.
This is a sign of advanced vein disease, so you’ll want to see a vein specialist for treatment to prevent further problems. Our doctors can treat your hyperpigmentation when treating your varicose veins.
Spider veins in the feet are a collection of tiny branches of veins on the ankle that can become so interwoven that it’s difficult to identify single veins. This gives the skin around the ankle a red or pink discoloration.
The medical term for this venous condition is corona phlebectatica. It’s associated with advanced vein disease and can be treated with treatments for varicose veins and spider veins, such as sclerotherapy.
Lipodermatosclerosis is a medical condition where the skin on the legs feels smooth and tight. You might notice leg pain, and the skin might appear scarred and discolored.
This vein disorder results from a slow process that can occur after many years of untreated diseased veins in the legs.
Klippel-Trenaunay Syndrome (KTS)
Klippel-Trenaunay syndrome is a rare congenital disorder associated with issues in the development of blood vessels, soft tissue, bones, or the lymphatic system. If KTS impacts the veins, it can cause swollen, twisted veins in the legs, arms, abdomen, or pelvis. Generally, malformed veins worsen with age.
Venous edema is the swelling of the feet caused by vein problems. When circulation is impaired because of damaged vein valves, fluid can accumulate in the lower legs, leading to chronic swelling.
The swelling might come and go. For instance, you might notice your symptoms worsen when it’s warm or when you stand for long periods of time. This vein condition is also associated with a feeling of leg heaviness. Over time, it can also cause skin changes.
Restless Leg Syndrome (RLS)
People who feel the urge to move their legs may suffer from restless leg syndrome (RLS). This condition can be uncomfortable, especially when sitting or lying down, so patients often have trouble sleeping and traveling.
RLS is associated with vein disease, which is why people with varicose veins often experience restless legs as well.
Deep vein thrombosis (DVT)
DVT occurs when a blood clot forms in a deep vein, usually in the leg. This type of venous disorder can cause pain, swelling, and skin changes, such as discoloration or sores. However, some people don’t have any symptoms.
If you think you have deep vein thrombosis, it’s important to see a doctor. At USA Vein Clinics, we don’t treat DVT, but we can help diagnose this condition and refer you to a doctor for treatment. DVT is usually treated with blood thinners.
If left untreated, this vein condition can become extremely serious. If the blood clot moves through the body and blocks blood flow to the lungs, it can become a pulmonary embolism, which causes sudden chest pain and shortness of breath. A pulmonary embolism can also be life-threatening.
Also known as superficial vein thrombosis, this condition is characterized by a blood clot in the superficial veins. It can cause pain, redness, and swelling. The skin may also feel warm to the touch.
Common treatments such as a warm compress and compression stockings can help to relieve symptoms. Superficial thrombophlebitis usually goes away on its own after two to three weeks.
Vasculitis is a serious but rare venous disorder. While there’s no known cause, doctors believe this condition is triggered by a disruption in the immune system — caused by medications or an infection — that causes the inside of the blood vessels to narrow.
Symptoms of vasculitis include joint pain, headaches, fever, and abdominal pain. It can also lead to nosebleeds and blindness.
Doctors usually prescribe anti-inflammatories to treat vasculitis.
May-Thurner syndrome occurs when the right iliac artery puts pressure on the left iliac vein. This compression makes it difficult for blood to flow upward to the heart.
As a result, blood can pool in the veins, leading to symptoms that are similar to vein disease symptoms, such as leg pain, swelling, and varicose veins. May-Thurner syndrome can also increase your risk of developing a blood clot in the leg.
This rare venous disorder can impact blood vessels in different areas of the body, but it usually affects the arms and legs. It causes the blood vessels to swell, which can block blood flow and cause blood clots.
Over time, this lack of blood flow can damage tissue, even causing it to become infected and die.
Buerger’s disease is associated with tobacco products, and quitting tobacco is the only way to stop it from progressing.
Find Relief From Vein Conditions
No matter what’s causing your vein problems, an experienced vein doctor can help you get the treatment you need. At USA Vein Clinics, we treat vein disease using minimally invasive procedures, helping our patients experience long-lasting symptom relief.
Our experienced physicians can also diagnose your vein issue using advanced ultrasound technology. They specialize in vein health and will be able to identify what’s causing your symptoms and recommend the best next steps for you.
If you’re looking for relief from vein disorders, you’ll find compassionate support from our vein doctors at USA Vein Clinics. We offer treatment for vein disease at over 160 locations nationwide.
Call us at (888) 768-3467 if you have questions or to schedule an appointment. You can also book a consultation at a vein center near you using our online scheduling form. We now offer you a choice of in-office or telemedicine appointments for your convenience.