Chronic venous insufficiency

Chronic venous insufficiency

Mild chronic venous insufficiency
Classification and external resources
Specialty cardiology
ICD-10 I87.2
ICD-9-CM 459.81
DiseasesDB 13734
MedlinePlus 000203
eMedicine article/461449
MeSH D014689

Chronic venous insufficiency (CVI) is a medical condition in which the veins cannot pump enough blood back to the heart.[1] The most common cause of CVI is superficial venous reflux which is a treatable condition.[2] As functional venous valves are required to provide for efficient blood return from the lower extremities, this condition typically affects the legs. If the impaired vein function causes significant symptoms, such as swelling and ulcer formation, it is referred to as chronic venous disease. CVI includes varicose veins and superficial venous reflux ("hidden varicose veins")[3] It is sometimes called chronic peripheral venous insufficiency and should not be confused with post-thrombotic syndrome in which the deep veins have been damaged by previous deep vein thrombosis.

Most cases of CVI can be improved with treatments to the superficial venous system or stenting the deep system. Varicose veins for example can now be treated by local anesthetic endovenous surgery.

The prevalence of CVI is far higher in women than in men.[4][5] The Tampere study, which examined the epidemiology of varicose veins in a large cohort of 3284 men and 3590 women, demonstrated that the prevalence of varicose veins in men and women was 18% and 42%, respectively. The condition has been known since ancient times and Hippocrates used bandaging to treat it.

Video explanation of varicose veins and chronic venous insufficiency

Signs and symptoms

Mild chronic venous insufficiency showing the hyperpigmentation

Signs and symptoms of CVI in the leg include the following:

CVI in the leg may cause the following:


Venous valves

CVI in the leg may be caused by the following:


Surgical treatment of CVI attempts a cure by physically changing the veins with incompetent valves. Surgical treatments for CVI include the following:

Treatment of CVI in the leg involves managing the symptoms (and preventing the symptoms getting worse) instead of effecting a cure. It is sometimes called conservative treatment. Conservative treatments include:

See also


  1. "Chronic Venous Insufficiency". Society for Vascular Surgery. December 1, 2009.
  2. Whiteley MS (2011). "Understanding Venous Reflux - the cause of varicose veins and venous leg ulcers". Whiteley Publishing. Retrieved January 8, 2015.
  3. RT Eberhardt; JD Raffetto (2005). "Contemporary Reviews in Cardiovascular Medicine - Chronic Venous Insufficiency. Circulation. 2005 111: 2398-2409 doi: 10.1161/01.CIR.0000164199.72440.08". Circulation. Retrieved January 8, 2015.
  4. Evans CJ, Fowkes FG, Ruckley CV, Lee AJ (1999). "Prevalence of varicose veins and chronic venous insufficiency in men and women in the general population: Edinburgh Vein Study.J Epidemiol Community Health. 1999 Mar;53(3):149-53.". J Epidemiol Community Health. Retrieved January 8, 2015.
  5. Robertson LA, Evans CJ, Lee AJ, Allan PL, Ruckley CV, Fowkes FG (May 2014). "Incidence and risk factors for venous reflux in the general population: Edinburgh Vein Study. Eur J Vasc Endovasc Surg. 2014 Aug;48(2):208-14. doi: 10.1016/j.ejvs.2014.05.017. Epub 2014 Jun 18.". Eur J Vasc Endovasc Surg. Retrieved January 8, 2015.
  6. Avril, Stéphane; Badel, Pierre; Dubuis, Laura; Rohan, Pierre-Yves; Debayle, Johan; Couzan, Serge; Pouget, Jean-Fraçois (January 25, 2012). Gefen, Amit, ed. Patient-Specific Modeling in Tomorrow's Medicine. Springer. p. 220. ASIN B00A9YFUDO. Retrieved August 2015. Check date values in: |access-date= (help)
  7. 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 Barron GS, Jacob SE, Kirsner RS (Sep 2007). "Dermatologic complications of chronic venous disease: medical management and beyond". Ann Vasc Surg. 21 (5): 652–62. doi:10.1016/j.avsg.2007.07.002. PMID 17823046.
  8. 1 2 3 4 5 "Chronic Venous Insufficiency".

External links

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