What is CVI?
Chronic venous insufficiency (CVI) is a disease that manifests in different ways due to incompetent valves of the leg veins. What typically happens is blood from the leg has difficulty returning to the heart. This causes “pooled blood,” which leads to a variety of symptoms including varicose veins, leg swelling, and leg pain.
What is CVI?
- Varicose veins
- Spider veins
- Restless leg syndrome
- The weakening of vaginal muscles
Varicose veins are one of the most obvious visual signs of CVI. These occur when blood pools causing enlarged and dilated veins, giving the skin a knotted rope-like appearance. While any superficial veins may become varicose veins, the most common affected site is in the legs.
What causes CVI?
The leg vein valves are the main problem. The veins serve as a highway for blood return from the legs to the heart. This is aided by muscle contractions of the feet and calves to push the blood upward. In order to provide continued upward flow, the leg veins are designed with one-way valves. When the valves of the large veins in the legs are leaking, other veins of the legs start to pool blood which results in swelling, pain, and bulging veins.
Valves incur damage as a result of:
- Advanced age
- Prolonged sitting or standing
- Family history
- Multiple pregnancies
- Deep vein thrombosis