Pelvic Congestion Syndrome is a chronic condition that essentially involves varicose veins in the pelvis. Because the valves of these veins are weakened, there is a backflow of blood in them, causing the blood to pool in the veins. The veins bulge and cause symptoms like pelvic pain, heaviness in the legs, hemorrhoids, and pain during sexual intercourse. This list is non-exhaustive but do look out for these common ones so that you can seek diagnosis quickly upon identifying them.
Heredity, previous pregnancies, and being at an age within the child-bearing range are all factors that can cause you to be at a higher risk for pelvic congestion syndrome. To find out in more detail what the types, causes, and symptoms of pelvic congestion syndrome are, do check out our other article. [What is Pelvic Congestion Syndrome?]
There are various ways in which a pelvic congestion syndrome specialist “near me” can determine whether or not you have pelvic congestion. Some of these tests or scans are simply to eliminate other causes of the same symptoms and confirm their diagnosis of pelvic congestion syndrome. The methods have been listed below:
● Computerised Tomography (CT) Scan: This scan will be taken of the pelvic and abdominal area. In the image obtained, the doctor will be able to see any enlarged blood vessels around the uterus. It may look like the image below if you do have pelvic congestion syndrome:
By helping the doctor visualise the extent to which the pelvis is obstructed, the doctor can help to determine what is the best treatment method for your case.
● Pelvic venogram: This is known as the most effective and accurate method for diagnosing pelvic congestion syndrome. It involves a catheter being inserted through the groin vein. A contrast agent (type of X-ray dye) is injected through this vein into the veins draining blood from the pelvic organs. This allows the blood vessels to show up more clearly in the X-ray scan that follows, where the doctor observes the way your blood flows to assess your condition.
● Ultrasound scans: These scans are not able to help the diagnosis process unless they are done while the patient is standing up. Hence, it is mostly used to exclude other possible causes. Pelvic and transvaginal ultrasounds may both be conducted together.
● Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) scan: Can also be used to detect any abnormalities in the blood vessels.
Unfortunately, complete prevention of pelvic congestion syndrome is not possible. Sometimes, you may still have to see a pelvic congestion syndrome specialist “near me”. Even so, the risk can still be minimised. These are some of the ways in which you do this:
● Compression garments: Wearing compression garments, especially during pregnancy can be a way to avoid having pelvic compression syndrome. Compression garments improve your blood circulation by placing pressure on the blood vessels and facilitating the continuous flow of blood. Backflow is more unlikely to happen with compression garments and your risk of varicose veins/pelvic congestion syndrome should be lowered.
● Maintain healthy weight/BMI: By avoiding obesity, you also avoid the host of health problems that may come with it. Maintaining a healthy weight keeps the fat percentage in your body normal so that there are no excess fats to press on the blood vessels and disrupt the blood flow in the veins. Having a healthy weight reduces the likelihood of you having hypertension (high blood pressure), a condition that is also associated with a higher risk of varicose veins, which in the pelvis area leads to pelvic congestion syndrome.
● Ensure the trend of weight gain is healthy during pregnancy: Weight gain during pregnancy is normal, however excessive weight gain can cause you to be at risk for many other health issues. Hypertension is one of these health issues, and hypertension could then cause pelvic congestion syndrome. There is no need to be extreme in dieting during pregnancy, but be sure to keep track of how much weight you are gaining regularly so that you can have a healthy delivery and baby as well.
● Regular Exercise: This helps you to maintain both your physical and vascular health. Aerobic exercise especially gets your heart pumping and it ensures that your body can support healthy circulation, strengthening the blood vessels and the valves in the veins. Some examples of activities you can do include swimming, running and cycling, etc. When your vascular health is in good condition, you are then less likely to have vascular diseases, including pelvic congestion syndrome.
● Reduce salt in your Diet, increase Fibre Intake: Both of these small changes to your diet can go a long way in boosting your overall health. Reducing your sodium/salt intake will decrease the chances of you having high blood pressure, also known as hypertension. Avoid processed foods as these tend to contain more sodium.
Increasing the amount of fibre-rich foods in your diet will then strengthen your blood vessels. As such, your veins will not weaken and bulge, and essentially you are unlikely to have varicose veins in any part of your body. Fibre-rich fruits include pears, strawberries, bananas, avocados, apples and so on. As for vegetables, Brussel sprouts, carrots, tomatoes, and broccoli also contain a lot of fibre.
At the end of the day, despite your best efforts, it is still possible for you to have pelvic congestion syndrome. If you realise that you have been experiencing some of the symptoms of this condition, do a quick search of “pelvic congestion specialists near me” to get checked up as soon as you can. Here at the Vascular and Interventional Centre, located in Novena Specialist Centre, we have skilled vascular surgeons who can provide you with the appropriate treatment for your condition. Book an appointment with them today! Details can be found below:
6694 6270 (Call)
9898 3595 (WhatsApp)
[email protected] (Email)