For those who love to get out on the open highway and drive, it’s important to know that lengthy travel time in cars increase the risk for developing a blood clot or Deep Vein Thrombosis (DVT). DVT can occur when the legs are constricted resulting in clots forming in veins in the lower leg. Within hours of forming, these clots are liable to fragment and travel around the body. They can lodge in the lung, heart or brain with potentially fatal results.
It’s been noted that any mode of travel lasting three hours or more can triple the chances of DVT to those who are susceptible. People most at risk include individuals who have recently had surgery, cancer or heart disease, those with a blood condition or history of thrombosis, or women who are pregnant or on hormone replacement therapy.
To reduce the risk of DVT during car travel, Dr. Robert Merchant of the Reno Vein Clinic suggests that both drivers and passengers take a break to stretch their legs at least every two hours, wear comfortable and unrestrictive clothing, drink plenty of water and consider compression stockings if necessary.
“Sometimes, driving can pose a larger threat than flying because passengers aren’t’ necessarily forced to get up and move, in comparison to having to walk through an airport to hop on a connecting flight” remarks Dr. Merchant.
For more information about preventing yourself from DVT and problematic vein issues, contact the Reno Vein Clinic www.renoveinclinic.com (775) 329-3100.
Aging is inevitable and unfortunately, it’s also a common cause of varicose veins… in fact, varicose veins affect many as one out of every two people over the age of 50.
As we age, all the blood vessels in the body tend to become less flexible and less elastic. This means that your veins could expand, but not necessarily return to their natural shape. This expansion can cause the veins to become damaged or not close properly, which then results in abnormal backward flow through the open valves.
This is more commonly known as venous reflux, which causes blood to collect, leaving veins expanded and resulting into those unwanted varicose and spider veins. If untreated, these varicose and spider veins can lead to swelling, leg ulcers and changes in the skin surrounding the lower leg and ankle.
Luckily there are minimally invasive treatments available to help treat and prevent problematic varicose veins.
Dr. Robert Merchant and Dr. John Daake of the Reno Vein Clinic can provide a consolation to determine the best treatment for you.
Visit www.renoveinclinic.com or call 329-3100.
For most women, the fashionable trend of wearing heels is unavoidable. However, it’s important to know that these fashion choices can pose some serious problems for one’s veins.
Venous blood flow is key for overall vein health, and the majority of venous blood flow is activated by walking, which activates the foot and calf pump to propel blood up the leg veins When wearing high heels, the natural walking motion is changed and the weight is now shifted to the fore foot, causing the calf muscles to remain contracted. This results in a decrease in the filling of the foot and calf veins, causing the vein to be less efficient. This deficiency causes a pooling of venous blood in the leg… resulting in spider and varicose veins.
If you must wear heels, here’s some tips from the Reno Vein Clinic:
Save heels for specials occasions.
Limit heel height if possible.
Activate your legs when standing in heels, try calf raises and heel pumps.
Consider wearing compressions stockings with heels.
Bring flat shoes with you to change into when needed…decreasing the actual time you are wearing heels.
It’s a new year! Meaning that it can be the ideal time to adopt healthier habits into your ongoing routine.
Healthy habits can protect you from the harmful effects of stress. Here are 10 positive healthy habits you may want to develop. (Via The American Heart Association)
Talk with family and friends.
A daily dose of friendship is great medicine. Call or writer friends and family to share your feelings, hopes and joys and ask them to share theirs.
Engage in daily physical activity.
Regular physical activity can relieve mental and physical tension. Physically active adults have lower risk of depression and loss of mental functioning. Physical activity can be a great source of pleasure, too. Try walking, swimming, biking or dancing every day.
Embrace the things you are able to change.
While we may not be able to do some of the things we once enjoyed, we are never too old to learn a new skill, work toward a goal, or love and help others.
Remember to laugh.
Laughter makes us feel good. Don’t be afraid to laugh out loud at a joke, a funny movie or a comic strip, even when we’re alone.
Give up the bad habits.
Too much alcohol, cigarettes or caffeine can increase blood pressure. If you smoke, decide to quit now. If you do drink alcohol, do so in moderation.
Try to “pace” instead of “race.” Plan ahead and allow enough time to get the most important things done without having to rush.
Get enough sleep.
Try to get six to eight hours of sleep each night. If you can’t sleep, take steps to help reduce stress and depression. Physical activity also may also improve sleep and quality of life in general.
- Use “to do” lists to help you focus on your most important tasks. Approach big tasks one step at a time. For example, start by organizing just one part of your life — your car, desk, kitchen, closet, cupboard or drawer.
Practice giving back.
Volunteer your time or spend time helping out a friend. Helping others helps you.
Try not to worry.
The world won’t end if your grass isn’t mowed or your kitchen isn’t cleaned. You may need to do these things, but right now might not be the right time.
Blood travels through veins to get from your cells back to your heart. When blood is in the veins of your legs, the contraction of your leg muscles helps the blood flow against gravity to the heart. During pregnancy, the volume of blood in your body increases to support the baby, but blood flow between the legs and pelvis decreases. This causes pressure to build up in the veins, forcing them to expand outward. The result is large, often visible, varicose veins. Watch this video for the full scoop on pregnancy and varicose veins, via:
A thoracic aortic aneurysm, say that five times fast, is a weakened and bulging area in the upper part of the aorta, which is the major vessel that feeds blood to the body from the heart. Depending on the size and growth rate of the aneurysm, treatment may vary from watchful waiting to emergency surgery.
Thoracic aortic aneurysms often grow slowly and without symptoms, making them difficult to detect. Some people may notice pain or tenderness in the abdomen, chest or back. The exact causes of thoracic aortic aneurysms are unknown, but contributing factors include hereditary conditions, connective tissue disease, heart valve failures and problems, and traumatic injury.
While there is not a medicine you can take to prevent these aneurysms, there are risk factors you can be aware of. Risk factors include age, tobacco use, high blood pressure, plaque build up in the arteries and genetic predisposition. Males are also more likely to develop a thoracic aortic aneurysm than women and more Caucasians are diagnosed with these aneurysms than any other race.
Doctors are able to diagnose thoracic aortic aneurysms through chest x-rays, echocardiograms, CT scans and MRA’s. If you think you may have an aortic aneurysm or have experienced any of the symptoms, see your doctor immediately.
For more information about vascular health contact one of the doctors at the Reno Vein Clinic at (775) 329-3100 or visit www.renoveinclinic.com.