Deep Vein Thrombosis

Vascular Surgery Associates, LLC

Vascular Surgery, Wound Care, and Podiatry located throughout Maryland and Newark, DE

Nearly half of those who develop a deep vein thrombosis (DVT) won’t have recognizable symptoms, but you can’t miss the sudden leg pain if it appears. The experienced physicians at Vascular Surgery Associates, LLC, offer prompt care, quickly diagnosing DVT and starting treatment, so you don’t need to worry about complications such as a pulmonary embolism. At the first sign of leg pain, book an appointment online or call one of the offices in Bel Air, Baltimore, Towson, Westminster, Elkton, Frederick, Ellicott City, Hampstead, Abingdon, Columbia, Lutherville, Severna Park, MD, Wilmington, and Newark, DE.

Deep Vein Thrombosis Q & A

What causes deep vein thrombosis?

Thrombosis is another name for a blood clot, which occurs when your blood thickens and forms a small clump. DVT refers to a blood clot that develops in veins located deep in the center of your leg.

Any circumstance, health condition, or medication that slows down the flow of blood can end up causing a DVT, including:

  • Prolonged inactivity such as sitting for a long time
  • Vein damage due to an injury or catheter
  • Blood clotting disorder
  • Hormonal medications

You have a higher risk of developing a DVT if you have heart failure, a family history of blood clots, or inflammatory bowel disease.

What symptoms develop due to deep vein thrombosis?

DVT causes sudden leg pain, with or without leg swelling. You may also have redness, warm-feeling skin, and tenderness.

If the clot breaks free and travels through your bloodstream, it can end up in your lungs, where it gets lodged in a vessel and blocks blood flow. This life-threatening condition, called a pulmonary embolism, causes shortness of breath, chest pain, and sometimes a bloody cough.

DVT can also cause venous insufficiency, which in turn leads to varicose veins and problems like skin rashes, non-healing ulcers, and skin discoloration in your lower legs or ankles.

How is deep vein thrombosis treated?

After diagnosing DVT using duplex ultrasound, your provider at Vascular Surgery Associates, LLC, creates a customized treatment plan that may include any of the following:

Blood thinners

These medications can’t eliminate an existing clot, but they stop the existing DVT from enlarging and prevent future blood clots.

Clot busters

Medications called thrombolytics dissolve your DVT. You may get this treatment intravenously, or your provider may insert a catheter into the blood vessel and use real-time imaging to guide the catheter to the blood clot. Then they release the clot-busting medication at the thrombosis.

Inferior vena cava (IVC) filter

Your provider at Vascular Surgery Associates, LLC, may also insert a filter into another vein in your abdomen called the inferior vena. The blood that travels up your leg vein goes through the inferior vena cava on its way back to your heart. Placing a filter here catches any pieces that may break away from a DVT.

If you develop sudden leg pain, call Vascular Surgery Associates, LLC, or book an appointment online right away to determine if you have a DVT.