What Is a Venous Duplex Ultrasound?

If you have issues with the veins in one or both of your legs, your vein doctor may recommend that you get a venous duplex ultrasound in order to check your vein health. Ultrasound is a safe technology that does not use radiation, which is why it is utilized in pregnant women.

Venous duplex ultrasound is frequently used to check vein health due to varicose veins, pain in the leg, or leg swelling; it is also used to search for blood clots in the veins of the legs. A blood clot can be very dangerous, as it can break away and travel to your lungs, causing a potentially fatal pulmonary embolism.

Let’s talk about what you can expect during this type of scan, why it should be done, and where you can go to receive an evaluation by a trusted vein doctor.

What Happens in a Venous Duplex Ultrasound Scan

A venous duplex ultrasound employs sound waves to produce images of your veins, which are soft structures and therefore will not show up clearly on X-rays. The ultrasound technician will use a wand-like device, called a transducer, and pass it over your legs. The transducer will produce real-time images of your veins on a display screen right there in the room.

What the scan will show is the movement of your blood through your veins. Pictures will be taken during the scan, and these images will be reviewed by the radiologist. The radiologist, who is a physician who specializes in bodily scans, will write a short report about the findings for your doctor.

A venous duplex ultrasound may also be used to scan the veins in your neck, shoulders, and arms. This scan is non-invasive and painless. There are no negative side effects associated with the procedure.

Purposes of a Venous Ultrasound

One of the major reasons to have this type of ultrasound scan of your veins is for your doctor to check for blood clots. A blood clot that forms in a vein that is deep within your leg – usually in a muscle, but it can also occur in a superficial varicose vein – is called deep vein thrombosis (DVT).

If a blood clot is found, you can start treatment immediately. This usually involves taking blood thinners.

People who are experiencing shortness of breath along with leg pain and/or excessive varicose veins may be asked to undergo this scanning procedure. A venous duplex ultrasound will reveal the cause of painful leg swelling and other symptoms. In addition to blood clots, damaged valves and abnormal blood flow can also be revealed during this exam.

Vein Specialist in Kansas City and Marshall, Missouri

If you are experiencing significant discomfort in one or both of your legs along with bulging varicose veins, our triple-board-certified vein specialist Dr. Scott Darling is here to help. Dr. Darling can conduct an accurate and efficient assessment and provide effective treatment for symptom relief, and he can restore the smooth, clear skin on your legs once again.

Dr. Darling is widely considered to be the best vein doctor in Kansas City. To schedule an appointment here at Missouri Vein Specialists, call us today at (816) 792-3400 or fill out our online request form. We look forward to serving you!