Veins in the arms and legs have tiny valves which are responsible for controlling blood flow back to the heart. Deep Vein Thrombosis (DVT) can clot or obstruct the vein leading to valve damage.
At least one-third of people who have DVT end up developing Post-thrombotic syndrome (PTS). The experts at Veniti add that people with Post-thrombotic syndrome experience the following symptoms: ulcers, swelling, chronic leg pain, and redness. PTS affects the mobility of limbs and is also extremely expensive to treat.
What Causes PTS?
Mainly, PTS occurs when DVT severely damages the walls and valves of the veins. Vein valves are in place to ensure that the blood flow only goes towards the direction of the heart. Any slight damage here causes the blood to reflux and go back to the legs instead of going up. This causes discomfort and swelling in the feet.
Finally, these mechanisms cause damage to the leg’s skin. It causes the skin in the ankle area to dry up, develop itchiness, and create discoloration. A small abrasion on this area may result in a venous leg ulcer. In worst cases, the veins are completely damaged and blocked so there is no blood flow through them.
What are the Symptoms?
Unfortunately, there is no diagnostic test for PTS. However, if you have symptoms such as tingling legs, heaviness, leg cramps, itchiness, or sores and ulcers on the leg, you should seek medical attention immediately. Remember that if you have previously been treated for DVT, be aware that you are at a high risk to develop PTS.
Treatment for PTS varies depending on the severity of the condition. However, the primary treatment method consists of exercise, elevation of the particular limb, stocking, and compression therapy. Some treatment plans also recommend blood thinners to prevent further formation of blood clots in the vein.
For many people, the best way to prevent PTS is awareness and activity. Know the signs of DVT and keep exercising. Meet your physician yearly and get a complete check-up.