May-Thurner syndrome, or MTS, is a condition that involves the compression of the left iliac vein by the right iliac artery. Because of the position of this vein and artery, MTS usually only occurs in the patient’s left leg. MTS increases the chance of developing deep vein thrombosis in the leg. Deep vein thrombosis is the partial or complete blockage of blood flow through a deep vein, usually in the legs, manifesting in the form of a blood clot.
MTS is most prevalent among women between the ages of 20 to 45. Women who have recently had a child, or have had more than one child also have a higher risk. Scoliosis and the use of oral birth control can also contribute to a patient’s chance of suffering from May-Thurner syndrome.
The main issue with May-Thurner syndrome is that there are often no symptoms at all. There is the possibility a patient will experience some pain or swelling in their left leg, but often MTS presents as symptomless.
While often presenting with no symptoms, untreated MTS will most likely lead to deep vein thrombosis. Deep vein thrombosis symptoms include significant swelling in the leg, pain or cramps, discoloration of the skin, and swollen veins sensitive to the touch. If left untreated, deep vein thrombosis can lead to serious complications if the blood clot breaks free and travels into the bloodstream. If the clot becomes lodged in the lungs, it can cause a life-threatening condition known as pulmonary embolism.
This is why it’s best to find MTS early, and seek treatment before it becomes deep vein thrombosis. Diagnosis is done with a physical exam, and an assessment of your medical history. A doctor will use a venogram to look at the condition of your veins, and see if a blood clot is beginning to form. Once they have identified the signs of MTS, you can begin to seek treatment which can include a venogram.
A venogram is imaging of a vein obtained with a small amount of contrast dye and/or carbon dioxide. This imaging can be both diagnostic and/or for treatment. This is done by making a small nick in the skin at the access site, usually the groin. A thin catheter is then placed into the vein for imaging and potential treatment. This imaging allows our Vascular Interventional Radiologists to see if there is compression of the Iliac vein by the Iliac artery. If there is significant compression, a stent will then be permanently placed into the vein. A balloon, called a venoplasty, is then placed into the vein temporarily inflated to enlarge the vein and ensure proper stent placement. This can help with diagnosing and treating May-Thurner.
While each therapy has its own set of advantages and applications, a venogram is best suited for those who do not wish to undergo major surgery.
Patients who can not take anticoagulant medications, also known as blood thinners, would benefit specifically from a vena cava filter. While most physicians will suggest the use of blood thinners to help with MTS and deep vein thrombosis, these can interact negatively with other medications a patient is taking. A vena cava filter and help to catch blood clots without the need for anticoagulants.
A Venogram can help address MTS before it forms a blockage large enough to cause deep vein thrombosis. A Venogram has a much faster recovery time than surgical alternatives. It is also a same day procedure, so you will be home and recovering in the comfort of your own residence.
Venograms are minimally-invasive, and therefore do not result in many of the issues often associated with major surgery. This means they do not utilize a large incision, which can cause significant scarring, nor do they use general anesthesia. The patient is comfortably sedated, but remains conscious during the duration of the treatment.
The next step is to choose a facility to perform your venogram. In doing so, make sure you select a team of well trained specialists, who utilize the best available medical technology to perform their procedures.
If you want to ensure you receive the best quality procedure and safest experience for your venogram, you’ll want to choose ProVas Labs.
At ProVas Labs, we understand that MTS and deep vein thrombosis are a serious matter. We make it our mission to walk you step-by-step through your procedure, ensuring you are comfortable during each phase of your treatment. Our specialists are experts in vascular treatments, and treat each patient with the same level of focus and care.
If you are looking for a less invasive procedure a venogram may be a great option for relief from MTS without the risk and discomfort of invasive procedures. We are here to answer any questions you have about the procedures involved with our MTS treatments. Simply schedule a consultation today!
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