What You Need to Know About Venous Valves
Veins benefit our bodies in various ways, some of which we may be unaware of. Certainly, veins circulate blood throughout our bodies. Sure, they are in charge of restoring deoxygenated blood to the heart. They can, in fact, swell, collapse, or even rupture. Veins are blood vessels, as you may know. But did you know that our body’s medium and big veins include venous valves that serve an important function? Talk to an expert today if you want to learn more about sclerotherapy treatments in Boise.
What Are Venous Valves?
If you look closely, you will notice that venous valves are flap-like structures with two cusps of elastic tissue. Veins, like the valves associated with the heart but unlike the arteries, have valves to ensure that blood flows in only one direction toward the heart. (Arteries do not need valves because the pressure from the heart is so high that blood can only flow in one direction.) Venous valves work against gravity to return blood to the heart. Venous valves are especially crucial in the arms and legs because they prevent blood backflow in response to gravity’s pull.
How Do Venous Valves Work?
Venous valves typically comprise two elastic flaps of tissue that alternately open and close. Venous valves collaborate with the musculoskeletal system. Muscles contract and relax constantly, forcing blood to flow toward the heart. The valves open to allow blood to flow and seal to prevent blood from flowing backward.
Blood flows via this network of veins until it reaches the heart and then to the lungs, where it receives oxygen and expels carbon dioxide and other impurities. The oxygenated blood then returns to the heart via the pulmonary vein, pumping to the body’s other regions through the arterial system.
What happens if there is a problem with the venous valves?
Venous valves are fragile structures whose stability is critical for the venous system’s normal function. The valves in your deeper leg veins normally keep blood flowing toward the heart. The vein walls are compromised, and the valves are damaged when venous valves “become bad” or are insufficient. This causes the veins to remain full of blood, particularly when standing, resulting in Chronic Venous Insufficiency. CVI is a long-term disorder caused by faulty vein valves, but a previous blood clot can also cause it in the legs. Venous valve anomalies can also cause additional problems, including thromboembolic phenomena, which are potentially fatal.