Venous Disease

Chronic Leg Edema & Venous Insufficiency

General Information

There are three forms of edema:

  • Venous edema from venous insufficiency - most common cause of leg edema in older adults (30% of the population). Chronic venous insufficiency can result from primary failure of venous valve function or it can be the sequela of an episode of venous thrombosis (post-thrombotic syndrome). 
  • Lymphedema - consists of excess protein-rich interstitial fluid within the skin and subcutaneous tissue resulting from lymphatic dysfunction (marked foot and toe involvement, verrucous thickened skin, nonpitting when chronic).
  • Lipidema - fat maldistribution with sparing of feet, not true edema.