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Deep Vein Thrombosis


Deep vein thrombosis is also called DVT, or more simply, a blood clot in your vein. It's a venous disorder affecting the return of de-oxygenated blood back to the heart. The veins in your legs have one- way valves to prevent blood from backing up or pooling in the lower legs. These valves have two flaps whose edges meet. As blood pumps back to the heart, the flaps open. Faulty function of these valves may lead to a deep vein thrombosis or blood clot.


  • Poor lower body circulation
  • Peripheral artery disease
  • Blood clots
  • Faulty venous valves or flaps
  • Vein damage
  • Decreased blood flow to the lower extremities


  • Lower extremity swelling
  • Sharp pain in calf
  • Redness or warmth near the knee, ankle or calf


You may not know you have a deep vein thrombosis, as many people don't experience any symptoms early on. A number of diagnostic tests may help confirm the diagnosis of deep vein thrombosis including:

  • Doppler Ultrasonography
  • Color Doppler Ultrasonography - to detect blood clots
  • MRI - Magnetic Resonance Imaging
  • Venography - radiographic materials injected into a vein in your foot, followed by an x-ray to view blood flow


  • Bed rest with feet elevated at least 6 inches to facilitate blood flow to the heart and prevent blood from pooling in the lower extremities.
  • Gentle lower extremity exercises or passive motion
  • Compression stockings
  • Anticoagulant therapy


If non-surgical treatments fail to produce desired results, your surgeon may suggest vascular surgery to bypass or repair damaged blood vessels in the lower limbs. A stent may also be placed to keep arteries and veins open. Common surgical procedures include leg bypass and percutaneous transluminal angioplasty.