Leg Vein Anatomy

The venous system is made up of a network of veins including superficial veins, deep veins and perforating veins.  These blood vessels carry unoxygenated blood toward the heart.

Deep veins are located deep inside your leg.  A deep vein is located beside an artery that has the same name.  Deep veins collectively carry most of your blood, therefore an obstruction can become life treating.  Clotting or thrombosis causes obstruction of a deep vein.  DVT or deep vein thrombosis occurs when a blood clot forms in the deep veins.

Superficial veins are close to your body’s surface and are often visible when you are working out or lifting something heavy.  The superficial veins are responsible for carrying the blood from the tissues closer to the skins surface to the deep veins.  Without the help from superficial veins, deep veins would not be able to properly do their job.

Perforator veins are also known as communicating veins because they transport the blood directly from the superficial veins to the deep veins, connecting two parallel systems.  Somewhat like rungs on a ladder connecting the two side rails.

Leg veins that deteriorate the most as people age are the superficial and perforator veins. The very superficial and often undesirable visible branches are known as varicose.

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