Thrombophlebitis is caused by the formation of a blood clot. Most blood clots form because of the improper blood flow in the veins. Common causes for the lack of blood flow include:
Long periods of immobility, such as being bed-ridden due to surgery
Trauma to a vein
Intravenous tubes used during surgery
Hereditary blood-clotting disorder
To help prevent the development of a blood clot, you should take proactive steps to maintain normal blood flow in the legs. For example, when on a long car trip or plane ride, stretch or walk around at regular intervals throughout the trip.
Symptoms & Treatment of Superficial Thrombophlebitis
Superficial thrombophlebitis is when a blood clot slows the blood flow in a vein near the surface of the skin, and is often associated with varicose veins. Patients suffering from superficial thrombophlebitis may experience warmth, tenderness, and pain around the affected veins. Sometimes it can cause the veins to swell and turn red. If the veins have not swollen or become permanently visible, there are several at-home treatments that patients can use to improve blood flow in the veins, including:
Application of heat to the affected area
Wearing of support stockings on the affected leg
Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory medications, such as ibuprofen
If the patients are also suffering from varicose veins or if the veins have become severely swollen and permanently visible, Dr. Rao may recommend a procedure to remove the vein such as sclerotherpy or laser ablation.
Symptoms and Treatment of Deep-Vein Thrombophlebitis
Deep-vein thrombophlebitis, also known as DVT, occurs when a blood clot slows the blood flow in a vein deep within a muscle. Unlike superficial thrombophlebitis, patients will not experience the visible swelling and color change of the affected veins because they are deeper within the muscle. However, warmth, tenderness, and pain are common symptoms. In more severe cases, patients may notice a discoloration of the toes and the pain will worsen when pressure is applied to the leg.
In most cases of DVT, Dr. Rao may recommend a blood thinner, such as heparin or warfarin, to reduce the size of the blood clots in the veins and prevent more from forming. For more severe cases of DVT, Dr. Rao may recommend the surgical removal of the clot to open the blocked vein, called venous thrombectomy. A specially designed catheter can be placed in the veins to remove blood clots.
Thrombophlebitis Treatments in St .Louis, MO
Dr. Ricardo Rao is a fellowship-trained, board certified vascular surgeon who specializes in non-surgical treatments for the treatment of superficial and deep-vein thrombophlebitis and minimally invasive bypass surgery. The staff at the Complete Vein Center of St. Louis is committed to providing the highest quality experience and treatments to patients in greater St. Louis area. For more information about thrombophlebitis and treatment options, schedule an appointment with Dr. Rao at the Complete Vein Center of St. Louis 314.989.WELL.
Thrombophlebitis Treatment in St. Louis
Thrombophlebitis is a common circulatory condition caused by a decrease in circulation due to a blood clot in a vein. Most frequently occurring in the legs, the clot causes the vein, either right under the skin or deeper within the muscle, to inflame. There are two types of thrombophlebitis, superficial thrombophlebitis and deep-vein thrombophlebitis.