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Venous Problems

What is venous insufficiency?

Your arteries carry blood from your heart to the rest of your body. Your veins carry blood back to the heart, and valves in the veins stop the blood from flowing backward.
When your veins have trouble sending blood from your limbs back to the heart, it’s known as venous insufficiency. In this condition, blood doesn’t flow back properly to the heart, causing blood to pool in the veins in your legs.
Several factors can cause venous insufficiency, though it’s most commonly caused by blood clots (deep vein thrombosis) and varicose veins.
Even if you have a family history of venous insufficiency, there are simple steps you can take to lower your chances of developing the condition.

Symptoms of venous insufficiency

Symptoms of venous insufficiency include:

  • swelling of the legs or ankles
  • pain that gets worse when you stand and gets better when you raise your legs
  • leg cramps
  • aching, throbbing, or a feeling of heaviness in your legs
  • itchy legs
  • weak legs
  • thickening of the skin on your legs or ankles
  • skin that is changing color, especially around the ankles
  • leg ulcers
  • varicose veins
  • a feeling of tightness in your calves