Often, we think of vascular diseases as something that occurs as we age, affecting those in retirement years and beyond. While it is true that many diseases need decades to become a problem, there are several vascular challenges don’t ignore the younger generations. Here, Dr. Tanquilut and Dr. Pradhan answer your questions about one of those conditions, thrombophlebitis.
What is thrombophlebitis?
Thrombophlebitis (throm-boe-fluh-BY-tis) means a blood clot or clots has formed in your veins, usually in your legs. The veins in your arm or neck can also be affected, but these locations are much less common.
What can cause thrombophlebitis?
You may experience thrombophlebitis if you’ve:
- had an injury to your vein
- used birth control pills or hormone therapy
- have been or are pregnant
- sat on an airplane, car or train for too long
- had prolonged bedrest, either at the hospital or at home
- had an infection
- have varicose veins
- stand for long periods of time
- are overweight
See? Thrombophlebitis doesn’t discriminate by age!
What symptoms should I watch for?
Thrombophlebitis can present in several ways:
- swelling in the leg or arm
- pain or tenderness over a vein
- increased warmth over a vein
- red or discolored skin over a vein
Should I see a doctor?
While superficial thrombophlebitis is rarely life-threatening, it can also be a symptom of deep vein thrombosis (DVT). You absolutely must see Dr. Pradhan or Dr. Tanquilut immediately if you suspect DVT. We may perform a blood test, an ultrasound or a CT scan to determine a diagnosis.
How is thrombophlebitis treated?
Treating superficial thrombophlebitis can be as simple as applying heat to the tender area, elevating the leg and using an NSAID such as Motrin or Aleve. In some cases, thrombophlebitis may require taking blood-thinning medication, ablation or sclerotherapy.
If you are concerned about thrombophlebitis – at any age – call Vascular Specialists at 815-824-4406. Dr. Tanquilut and Dr. Pradhan are always ready to thoroughly answer your questions.