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Chronic venous insufficiency or CVI is a medical condition where the veins cannot pump enough oxygen-poor blood back to the heart.[1] This is due to damaged or "incompetent" valves as may occur after deep vein thrombosis (when the disease is called postthrombotic syndrome) or phlebitis.

Contents

CVI in the legs

Venous valves prevent reverse blood flow.

Usually it happens in the leg's veins. Itching (pruritis) is sometimes a symptom, along with hyperpigmentation of the legs. Symptoms of CVI include chronic swelling of the legs and ankles. The skin may react with varicose eczema, local inflammation, thickening, and an increased risk of ulcers and cellulitis.

CVI in the Central Nervous System

CVI has been reported in the CNS of several persons[2]. When it appears into the CNS is called Chronic cerebro-spinal venous insufficiency (CCSVI). It can be seen using Transcranial doppler sonography or MRV (magnetic resonance venography)

This disease was only recently described (2006) and the first international symposium took place on September 8, 2009 at Bologne, Italy. The causes of the venous insuficiencies were discussed, and it was mostly shown that it is due to venous stenosis which is subsequently due to genetics or embrionic problems[3].

The known consequences of the disease are hypoxia, delayed perfusion and iron deposits in the blood vessels, with unknown final effects for the health of the patients. A connection with MS has been proposed (all cases of CCSVI were found in MS patients[4]) but the possible relationship is still under study.

The disease can be treated currently in two ways: Balloons to open the veins, in the hope they will remain open, and venous stents, to keep them open permanently.

See also

References

  1. ^ "VascularWeb: Chronic Venous Insufficiency". http://www.vascularweb.org/_CONTRIBUTION_PAGES/Patient_Information/NorthPoint/Chronic_Venous_Insufficiency.html. Retrieved 2008-10-09.  
  2. ^ P Zamboni1, R Galeotti1, E Menegatti1, A M Malagoni1, G Tacconi1, S Dall’Ara1, I Bartolomei2, F Salvi2, Chronic cerebrospinal venous insufficiency in patients with multiple sclerosis [1]
  3. ^ Bologna conference notes [2]
  4. ^ Zamboni P. et al.: Chronic cerebrospinal venous insufficiency in patients with multiple sclerosis. J Neurol Neurosurg Psychiatry. 2009 April; 80(4): 392–399[3]
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