Chronic Venous Insufficiency

Chronic Venous Insufficiency
Chronic Venous Insufficiency (CVI) poses dangers like painful swelling, skin changes, varicose veins, and, if left untreated, can potentially lead to severe ulcers and infection risks.

When the veins in the legs are affected by Chronic Venous Insufficiency (CVI), they have trouble pumping blood back to the heart. As a result, blood may collect in the lower extremities, which can cause a host of problems.

Etiology and Risk Factors

Damaged or insufficient vein valves, which fail to adequately regulate blood flow, are a common cause of chronic venous insufficiency (CVI). The major role of these valves is to stop blood from going in the opposite direction. Causes of congenital vascular infection (CVI) include:

  • Age
  • A history of deep vein thrombosis (DVT)
  • Family history of venous disease
  • Obesity
  • Pregnancy
  • Prolonged standing or sitting
  • Smoking

Symptoms of Chronic Venous Insufficiency

  • Swelling in the legs or ankles (edema)
  • Pain that worsens when standing and improves with leg elevation
  • Leg heaviness and fatigue
  • Varicose veins
  • Changes in skin color and texture, often leading to a brownish or reddish discoloration
  • Ulcers on the legs, particularly around the ankles


Diagnosing CVI typically involves reviewing the patient’s medical history, conducting a physical exam, and using confirmatory imaging tests like Duplex ultrasound to evaluate blood flow and the condition of the leg veins. 

Information verified by the team.

Treatment and Management

Lifestyle ChangesMedical TreatmentsSurgical Procedures
Leg elevationCompression therapySclerotherapy
Weight managementMedications (e.g., diuretics, anticoagulants)Endovenous laser therapy (EVLT)
ExerciseWound care for ulcersVein stripping
Avoidance of long periods of standing or sittingValve repair or vein bypass

In addition to the above treatments:

  • Compression Therapy: This is crucial for managing CVI, involving the use of compression stockings to improve venous blood flow.
  • Wound Care: For patients with venous ulcers, appropriate wound care and possibly referral to a specialist (wound care clinic) are important for healing and infection prevention.
  • Pharmacotherapy: Can involve the use of pentoxifylline or aspirin therapy aimed in improving microcirculation and leg ulcer healing.
  • Endovenous Ablation Procedures: These minimally invasive procedures use heat or chemical injections to close off abnormal veins.


  • The risk of developing CVI can be reduced by maintaining a healthy weight, exercising regularly, avoiding prolonged periods of sitting or standing, and by elevating the legs when possible.

Follow-Up and Prognosis

To track treatment success and make course corrections as needed, it is essential to have regular check-ins with a healthcare professional. If CVI is treated early and consistently, it can slow its course and enhance patients’ quality of life.

As a chronic illness, CVI often needs ongoing care throughout a person’s life. Nevertheless, with the right medication, the majority of patients with CVI will be able to control their symptoms and prevent more severe consequences, like leg ulcers.

A comprehensive care plan centered on symptom management and disease progression prevention for patients with CVI requires close collaboration between a primary care physician, a vascular specialist, and occasionally a dermatologist.

Reyus Mammadli

As a healthy lifestyle advisor I try to guide individuals in becoming more aware of living well and healthy through a series of proactive and preventive measures, disease prevention steps, recovery after illness or medical procedures.

Education: Bachelor Degree of Medical Equipment and Electronics.

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