Semin intervent Radiol 2005; 22(3): 157-161
DOI: 10.1055/s-2005-921949
Copyright © 2005 by Thieme Medical Publishers, Inc., 333 Seventh Avenue, New York, NY 10001, USA.

Venous Pathophysiology

Chieh-Min Fan1
  • 1Department of Radiology, Massachusetts General Hospital, Boston, Massachusetts
Further Information

Publication History

Publication Date:
27 October 2005 (online)


Chronic venous insufficiency and varicose veins are among the most prevalent medical problems in the adult population. Historically, our understanding of venous reflux disease focused upon the anatomical mechanisms of valvular incompetence. More recent investigations into the cellular and molecular aspects of venous insufficiency have shown that the disease is a complex multifactorial process reflecting both systemic abnormalities of connective tissue synthesis and cellular inflammatory reaction. New minimally invasive endovenous treatments for primary lower extremity venous insufficiency have spurred growing clinical interest in this disease. The intent of this review article is to discuss the prevalence, epidemiological risk factors, and current theories of the pathophysiology of primary venous insufficiency.


Chieh-Min Fan, M.D. 

Department of Radiology, Massachusetts General Hospital, Boston, MA 02114