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Vascular Surgery

Vein Loss or Death

04/12/2010

Question:

I was sedated for a procedure about a year ago and developed a very hard lump in the antecubital vein in my left arm. The lump was present for almost 6 months and was very sore. Normally my veins are extremely visible and I figured I couldn`t see the vein because of the lump but when it disappeared my vein never re-appeared. Now, at times, I have pain in the area that the vein used to be and there is even a slight depression where the vein was.

Should I be concerned about any future complications like an embolus or a varicose vein?

Answer:

It sounds like you had a superficial thrombophlebitis (blood clot) which typically does not progress to an embolus. This is usually not related to varicose veins in the upper extremity. If the limb swells or becomes red/tender, then you should seek further medical attention.

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Response by:

Jean  E Starr, MD Jean E Starr, MD
Clinical Associate Professor of Vascular Surgery
College of Medicine
The Ohio State University