Superficial thrombophlebitis

In most cases of superficial thrombophlebitis, it usually affects a leg vein. The superficial veins are those that can be seen or felt right under the skin. On the other hand, any superficial vein in the body can be affected.

The usual site is in a varicose vein in the leg. Take note that varicose veins are common, especially among pregnant women. Superficial thrombophlebitis is not considered serious but can cause certain complications.

What are the risk factors?

Superficial thrombophlebitis

Redness, swelling and tenderness are the usual symptoms.

There are several risk factors that makes an individual more likely to develop inflammation in a vein.

  • Varicose veins – these are susceptible to minor injuries that can result to inflammation
  • Previous vein issues – if an individual had previous deep vein thrombosis (DVT) or superficial thrombophlebitis, he/she is likely to develop the condition
  • Intravenous injections or infusions – these can damage the vein and trigger inflammation.
  • Irregularities of the blood clotting factors – certain conditions can alter the clotting factors in the bloodstream which makes blood clots more likely.
  • Blood stasis – this occurs among those who are immobile, after a major surgery or those who have varicose veins

What are the indications of superficial thrombophlebitis?

  • Redness, swelling and tenderness are the usual symptoms
  • Fever
  • If a blood clot develops within the inflamed region of the vein, it might feel hard or knob-like.
  • Once the inflammation settles, a darkened area of skin might remain over the affected vein.
  • A small-sized lump can be present beneath the skin that can be tender for some time.


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