Iliac vein compression syndrome, also known as May-Thurner syndrome, occurs when pressure accumulates in the left common blood vessel called iliac vein. Medical professionals say that the right iliac artery may cross over the left iliac vein and press it against the spine. If the compression gets severe, blood will fail to flow correctly in the vein and clots may form. If these clots break away from the vein, more severe health complications may develop and even death may occur. For this reason, you need to know some things about this disease.
What are the symptoms?
Some people don’t realize they have already developed the disease until the obvious symptoms of deep vein thrombosis occur. The formation of blood clots deep within the leg veins may lead to deep vein thrombosis. This problem further causes leg pain, swelling, bleeding, and formation of varicose veins. May-Thurner Syndrome may also cause pulmonary embolism in some patients once the large clots break away and lodge in the lungs. Symptoms accompanying this condition include painful deep breathing, rapid heartbeat, bloody coughs, and shortness of breath.
Who are at risk?
People with vein disorders in the lower extremities may likewise be suffering from May-Thurner Syndrome. According to experts, the primary cause of this disease might have a link to a congenital condition. This mainly occurs if there’s an abnormal arrangement in the right common iliac artery and the left common vein. Trauma may trigger this condition, with age and extreme weight gain being the main risk factors.
Treatment options for May-Thurner disease include surgery, blood-thinning medication, Catheter-Directed Thrombolysis, and stenting.
How can you diagnosis this condition?
Most doctors diagnose the disease by imaging the pelvic area and lower back. Some of the imaging techniques used to diagnose the disease include ultrasound, computed tomography, magnetic resonance imaging, and X-ray. Doctors may also use venography technique where they inject a special dye into the vein before they take X-ray images. The dye shows up the veins on X-ray and reveals any area with sluggish blood flow or compressed areas.
Although you’re not suffering from the symptoms of May-Thurner syndrome, this doesn’t mean it won’t occur in the future. In fact, some people develop certain diseases without knowing. If diagnosed early, treatment won’t be difficult.