What is CVI?

The veins main role is to return blood flow back to the heart using muscles in the leg and feet along with one-way valves that prevent backflow due to gravity. Failure or weakening of the vein valves can lead to flow reversal that results in pooling of blood in the legs. Certain risk factors that may lead to CVI include:​

  • Obesity

  • Pregnancy

  • Obstructive sleep apnea

  • Heart failure

  • Family history of varicose veins

  • Prior orthopedic surgeries leading to vein trauma

  • Blood clots

What are the Symptoms of CVI?

  • Leathery or flaky skin on the legs and ankles

  • Swollen legs/ankles provoked by prolonged standing or sitting

  • Restless leg symptoms

  • Leg heaviness and fatigue

  • Reddish-brown skin discoloration around the ankles

  • Varicose veins

  • Venous stasis ulcers

  • Bleeding veins

  • Purplish discoloration of the foot

What Tests can Help Diagnose CVI?

Vascular ultrasound is used to exclude a blood clot and identify if incompetent valves are present leading to venous reflux or insufficiency.

What are the Treatments of CVI?

CVI can be treated if diagnosed in the early stages. Strategies include:​

  • Weight loss    

  • Leg elevation

  • Compression stocking to augment blood return

  • Avoidance of prolonged standing

  • Exercise

​For more severe cases, particularly involving skin integrity and life-limiting symptoms, advanced therapies include:​

HeartPlace Plano West has the best cardiologists, electrophysiologists, and vascular surgeons in Plano, TX. 


6124 West Parker Road
Medical Building 3, Suite 536
Plano, Texas 75093

Phone: 972-378-9560

Fax: 844-290-4363

Location Hours: 

8:00 am - 5:00 pm (M-F)


1105 Central Expressway North
Medical Building 2, 3rd Floor, Suite 2330

Allen, Texas 75013

Phone: 972-649-6511

Fax: 844-290-4360

Location Hours: 

8:00 am - 5:00 pm (M-F)


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