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Common Venous Problems: Treating DVT & Varicose Veins


Veins are blood vessels that move deoxygenated blood from the body back to the heart. The body’s entire network of veins is called the venous system. Unlike arteries, veins have thin walls. Venous problems occur when vein valves and walls are damaged and fail to keep blood moving to the heart. The three main types of venous problems are varicose veins, deep vein thrombosis (DVT), and chronic venous insufficiency. 

Because some venous problems can be life threatening — like when a blood clot from one blood vessel breaks loose and travels to another vessel in the lungs — it’s important to see a doctor if you’re having symptoms of DVT or other issues. Dignity Health offers testing and treatment for venous problems, including varicose veins, in the Bay Area. Find a Doctor and make an appointment today.

Symptoms of DVT & Other Venous Problems

Varicose veins, chronic venous insufficiency, and DVT symptoms include:

  • Large, visible veins, especially in the legs 
  • Swollen, achy feet and legs
  • Slow-healing skin wounds on the legs and feet

Causes of Varicose Veins & Other Venous Problems

Your veins contain one-way valves designed to keep blood flowing toward the heart. Sometimes, these valves become damaged or floppy and don’t work properly. Blood can pool up in the veins instead of flowing to the heart. Weak veins that balloon out to the side make this problem worse. Eventually, stagnant blood causes the surrounding tissue to swell — especially in the legs, since the heart must work against gravity to get your blood moving back to your chest.

Treatments for DVT & Other Venous Problems at Dignity Health

Treatment and prevention of venous problems focuses on restoring vein function, reducing swelling, and preventing complications such as blood clots.

Common chronic venous insufficiency, DVT, and varicose vein treatments include:

  • Resting with your legs raised, since gravity helps improve venous blood flow from the lower legs and feet back to the heart
  • Physical activity, which promotes healthy blood flow from the feet and legs to the heart 
  • Medications
  • Compression hosiery and devices
  • Surgical procedures

Dignity Health doctors are focused on your well-being and are committed to diagnosing and treating venous problems. 

Dignity Health treats deep vein thrombosis, varicose veins, and chronic vein insufficiency in the Bay Area, including San Francisco, Santa Cruz, and Redwood City.