Midwest Institute for Non-Surgical Therapy
Vascular and Endovascular Specialist located in St. Louis, MO; Evergreen Park, IL; Chicago, IL; Wentzville MO; Swansea, MO.
Venous insufficiency affects up to 40% of adults, and without treatment, the condition causes varicose veins, painful legs, an inflammatory skin rash, and nonhealing leg ulcers. Board-certified endovascular specialist, Goke Akinwande, MD, at Midwest Institute for Non-surgical Therapy (MINT) received fellowship training in interventional radiology at the prestigious University of Pittsburgh. Dr. Akinwande combines exceptional skill with years of clinical experience to provide advanced care for venous insufficiency. To schedule an appointment, call one of our offices in St. Louis, MO, and Wentzville MO, Evergreen Park, IL, Swansea, IL, and Chicago Metro IL, or book an appointment online today.
Venous Insufficiency Q&A
What is venous insufficiency?
Venous insufficiency, also called chronic venous insufficiency, is a condition that develops when you have impaired blood flow in one or more veins. This condition most often occurs due to damaged valves. Less frequently, deep vein thrombosis may lead to the problem.
Your veins are equipped with one-way valves that open to let blood flow toward your heart and then close to prevent it from going backward. Weak, stretched, or damaged valves let blood flow in the wrong direction.
Backward-flowing blood means that some of the blood pools in the vein and doesn’t make it back to your heart. That’s when you have venous insufficiency.
Damaged valves most often occur in your legs, where the valves are essential for keeping blood moving up your legs against gravity.
Deep vein thrombosis (DVT)
A DVT is a blood clot in a vein deep in your leg. The clot affects blood flow and causes increased pressure in the vein, potentially damaging valves and causing venous insufficiency.
What symptoms develop if I have venous insufficiency?
Venous insufficiency causes varicose veins and other symptoms, such as:
- Painful, itchy, and/or aching legs
- Swelling in your lower legs and ankles
- Thickened and discolored skin
- Eczema-like skin rashes
- Nonhealing ulcers on your lower leg or ankle
The last three symptoms on the list are signs that you have advanced venous insufficiency. Without medical wound care, venous ulcers get progressively worse and cause skin and bone infections.
How is venous insufficiency treated?
After a physical exam and diagnostic vascular ultrasound, your provider at MINT recommends one or more treatments such as:
At the early stages of venous insufficiency, you may only need compression stockings to improve circulation through your leg.
Sclerotherapy is a treatment for varicose veins and venous insufficiency. Your provider injects a medication that makes the vein wall collapse. Then your body absorbs the treated tissues and restores circulation by sending blood through a healthy vein.
When deep veins are involved, your MINT provider uses ultrasound to map the veins and guide the injections.
Vein ablation closes the vein using laser energy or radiofrequency energy. Your provider makes a tiny incision and uses real-time imaging to guide a catheter to the varicose vein. Then they use the catheter to send out energy.
The VenaSeal closure system uses a medical-grade adhesive to close the vein. Like vein ablation, your provider uses a catheter to place the adhesive inside your vein.
If you have varicose veins or other symptoms of venous insufficiency, call Midwest Institute for Non-surgical Therapy or book an appointment online today.