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Superficial Thrombophlebitis

What is Superficial Thrombophlebitis?

Superficial Thrombophlebitis is a medical condition characterized by inflammation with the formation of a blood clot in a vein that is located near the skin (a superficial vein). It usually occurs in the leg, but may also happen in the arm or neck. It is commonly due to prolonged intravenous use, injury, surgery or long periods of sitting. When the vein is inflamed, it causes signs and symptoms, such as redness, warm and pain on the skin of the affected area. Superficial thrombophlebitis is a mild condition. Symptoms generally disappear within 1 to 2 weeks without any complications with treatment. In very rare cases, complications, such as gangrene, cellulitis and pulmonary embolism may occur.

Medical Specialties and Clinical Interests

What are the Signs and Symptoms of Superficial Thrombophlebitis?

Signs and symptoms of Superficial Thrombophlebitis may include:

  • A feeling of warmness on the affected area
  • Hardening of a vein just below the skin
  • Limb pain
  • Pain along a vein just below the skin
  • Skin redness along a vein just below the skin
  • Swelling along the veins beneath the skin

What Causes Superficial Thrombophlebitis?

Possible causes of Superficial Thrombophlebitis are:

  • Inflammation of the veins

What Increases the Risk of Superficial Thrombophlebitis?

The risk of Superficial Thrombophlebitis increases when you/your:

  • Are consuming Oral Contraceptives
  • Are pregnant
  • Have Bleeding Disorder
  • Have recent use of intravenous line
  • Sit for a long period of time
  • Stand for a long period of time

What Complications Can Superficial Thrombophlebitis Cause?

Superficial Thrombophlebitis may result in the following complications:

  • May lead to the development of Gangrene

How Can You Prevent Superficial Thrombophlebitis?

No specific prevention guideline exists for Superficial Thrombophlebitis at this moment.

What Treatments are Available for Superficial Thrombophlebitis?

Treatments and management of Superficial Thrombophlebitis may vary depending on the individual patient and the severity of the medical condition. Treatment options may include:

  • Analgesics
  • Aspirin
  • Non-Steroidal Anti-Inflammatory Drugs
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