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Jornal Vascular Brasileiro

versão impressa ISSN 1677-5449versão On-line ISSN 1677-7301


SEIDEL, Amélia Cristina; COELHO, Ricardo Lima; COELHO, Mariana Lima  e  BELCZAK, Cleusa Ema Quillici. Is vein damage the only cause of clinical signs of lower limb chronic venous insufficiency?. J. vasc. bras. [online]. 2014, vol.13, n.3, pp.162-167. ISSN 1677-5449.


Venous insufficiency is a very prevalent disease. Some decades ago a group of patients was identified that had symptoms of venous insufficiency, but no visible anatomic abnormalities. Studies showed that this subset had reduced venous tone, and their condition became known as hypotonic phlebopathy.


To investigate prevalence, age group and variations in body mass index (BMI) among patients with hypotonic phlebopathy.


A total of 1,960 limbs were examined in 1,017 patients who had been referred for complaints compatible with venous insufficiency. Patients with BMI ≥ 30 were defined as obese. The patients were examined using color Doppler ultrasonography to detect presence or absence of reflux in veins of the lower limbs and were then distributed into two groups as follows: patients with CEAP ≤ 1 and no reflux, diagnosed with hypotonic phlebopathy; or patients with CEAP ≥ 2 and reflux.


The study sample comprised 89.7% women and 10.3% men with a mean age of 44.9 years. Hypotonic phlebopathy was more common among the women (p = 0.0001). Obese women were more likely than women who were not obese to have venous symptom etiology involving trunk lesions (p = 0.0017). Among the men, obesity was unrelated to etiology of symptoms (p = 0.5991). Symptomology was more likely to be related to trunk vein damage among older age groups than among younger age groups (p-valor <0.0001).


Hypotonic phlebopathy was very prevalent, particularly among young women who were not obese.

Palavras-chave : venous insufficiency; color Doppler ultrasonography; varicose veins.

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