Your Digital Infrared Thermal Imaging Assessment Thermographers.
WHAT ARE VARICOSE VEINS.
They are the large raised varicose veins or the small unsightly surface veins which
are both commonly termed Varicose Veins.
In the large, raised veins, the blood flows
in the wrong direction, ie downwards instead of up towards the heart, because of
the broken valves. These valves can be broken in the groin, the back of the knee
or sometimes the calf.
When a valve is broken, the flow of blood is reversed with gravity, flowing downwards
instead of flowing up, causing pressure to be applied to the superficial veins making
them enlarge. The superficial veins in the leg, that is the veins outside the muscles
sitting just under the skin, are arranged in the form of a tree. There are two major
trunks or straight veins going up and down the leg, and multiple branches of these
trunks that go around the leg forming varicose veins. The trunks are called saphenous
veins and the branching veins are simply called tributary varicosities. At the tops
of the saphenous trunks are major valves, one in the groin and one at the back of
the knee, which are supposed to keep the blood from flowing backwards down those
The 'deep' veins in the leg don't form varicose veins because they are supported
and surrounded by muscle. Only the superficial veins outside the muscle are subject
to the pressure to form the large varicose veins.
Surface Veins are unsightly, blue,
zig zagging reticular veins or 'spider veins' giving the appearance of red or blue
blotches , which are unsightly. Sometimes they are so superficial that they are actually
part of the skin itself. These unsightly surface veins can exist by themselves or
in conjunction with the larger true varicose veins.
The anterior view of the upper legs shows a patient who had unexplained pain in the
right leg for over a year. The thermogram shows a varicosity with a perforator that
a vascular surgeon was able to treat with minimal intervention due to the accuracy
of the localization.
The image showing the vascular pattern in the right lateral leg was of a patient
who had a 3 year history of pain in the mid lateral thigh and knee. Nerve conduction
tests and a full range of anatomical imaging tests failed to find any cause for the
pain. This thermographic study led to a confirmed diagnosis of phlebitis.
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