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Phlebitis - Pain In The Vein!

Aug 26, 2007
"Thrombo" implies "clot". An inflammation of the vein is called phlebitis. Thrombophlebitis happens when an inflammation in one or more veins is caused by a blood clot. This problem normally occurs in your legs, yet it may also rarely appear in the arms and neck. The affected vein can also be near your skin surface, which may result to superficial thrombophlebitis or DVT (deep vein thrombosis). A blood clot in the deep vein puts you in greater risk for other more server health problems such as embolism (dislodged clot passing through your lungs) or pulmonary embolism, or the blocking the lung's pulmonary artery.

There are many reasons why you can obtain a blood clot. Yet it increases if you are confined in a bed for a long period of time like when you're suffering from a heart attack or a leg injury or after you underwent a surgery. It will also alleviate the condition if you just had a stroke that causes paralysis in your legs and arms. Both pregnancy and postpregnancy creates increased pressure in your veins in the legs and pelvis, resulting to phlebitis. Some medication such as hormone replacement therapy or contraceptives can contribute to the increase of the clotting ability of your blood. Obesity, excessive alcohol drinking, and smoking are also popular causes of this condition. Phlebitis is most likely to happen if you suffer from a blood-clotting disorder or if you have such family medical history.

Redness and swelling as well as pain, tenderness, and warmth in the affected area are the common phlebitis symptoms. If the damage is in your superficial vein, you will see hard and tender red cord underneath your skin's surface. When it's the deep vein that is affected, you will feel pain when you walk or stand and your leg appears swollen and tender to touch. You will likely develop fever too. Others exhibit asymptomatic condition.

There are a variety of ways to diagnose thrombophlebitis. Your physician will initially inquire about any discomfort you are experiencing and then take a look at the affected veins found near the skin's surface. He may also perform either of the following examinations:

1. MRI and CT scans. Both of these can give visual images of the veins that can help determine if there's an existing blood clot. There are times when venous thrombosis is discovered when such scans are accomplished for other purposes.
2. Venography. A contrast agent such as a dye is injected into one of the large veins in your ankle or foot. An X-ray will reveal an image of veins found in the feet and legs, which can be used to search for any blood clot. This is not normally used today as some less invasive tests can already confirm the doctor's diagnosis.
3. A lot of those who suffer from acute thrombosis have high blood level of D dimmer, a dissolving substance for clots. This test may not be conclusive, however, since elevated D dimer may be present in other conditions, but it's useful in ruling out DVT.

There are plenty of ways that you can prevent the progression of phlebitis. One is to not remain idle. You can take walk along the aisles when you're in an airplane or stop every hour and walk around your car if you're driving. Don't wait anything tight around the waist, and drink a lot of water to prevent dehydration. If you're prone to phlebitis or worse DVT, you can ask your doctor if you can use compression stockings. Taking aspirin is not recommended as it can excessively thin your blood.
About the Author
Kevin Pederson, a regular writer for Natural Remedies and Home Cures the author offer useful information about the diagnosis and treatment of Phlebitis. He also educates readers on phlebitis being a serious vein problem and could be fatal if left untreated.
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