Document Detail

Lower limb vein enlargement and spontaneous blood flow echogenicity are normal sonographic findings during pregnancy.
MedLine Citation:
PMID:  10993968     Owner:  NLM     Status:  MEDLINE    
PURPOSE: We studied pregnancy-induced changes in lower limb venous function. METHODS: We used plethysmography and sonography to assess the changes in venous wall distensibility, saphenous vein diameters, and spontaneous blood flow echogenicity in the common femoral veins in 190 consecutive women during and after uncomplicated pregnancies (total of 409 examinations). RESULTS: The percentage of women with clinical symptoms and signs of venous insufficiency increased significantly during pregnancy. The mean diameters of the great and small saphenous veins also increased significantly, while occlusive venous plethysmography showed a decrease in parameters indicating vein distensibility. Spontaneous blood flow echogenicity in the common femoral veins was clearly visible or marked in 6% of cases during the first trimester of pregnancy, 63% during the second trimester, and 96% during the third trimester, versus 6% after delivery (p < 0.0001). The mean hematocrit decreased and the mean fibrinogen concentration increased during pregnancy. CONCLUSIONS: The increase in lower limb venous pressure seen during pregnancy leads to venous overdistention and worsens blood stasis. Decreased venous flow velocity and rheological alterations result in increased red cell aggregation, giving rise to spontaneous blood flow echogenicity. Spontaneous blood flow echogenicity is therefore a normal finding during pregnancy and should not be mistaken for venous thrombosis.
Y Rabhi; C Charras-Arthapignet; J C Gris; J Ayoub; J F Brun; F M Lopez; C Janbon; P Marès; M Dauzat
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Publication Detail:
Type:  Clinical Trial; Comparative Study; Journal Article    
Journal Detail:
Title:  Journal of clinical ultrasound : JCU     Volume:  28     ISSN:  0091-2751     ISO Abbreviation:  J Clin Ultrasound     Publication Date:  2000 Oct 
Date Detail:
Created Date:  2000-10-24     Completed Date:  2000-10-24     Revised Date:  2006-11-15    
Medline Journal Info:
Nlm Unique ID:  0401663     Medline TA:  J Clin Ultrasound     Country:  UNITED STATES    
Other Details:
Languages:  eng     Pagination:  407-13     Citation Subset:  IM    
Copyright Information:
Copyright 2000 John Wiley & Sons, Inc.
Laboratory of Cardiovascular Physiology, Montpellier-Nîmes Faculty of Medicine, Avenue Kennedy, 30907 Nîmes, France.
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MeSH Terms
Blood Flow Velocity
Femoral Vein / physiopathology,  ultrasonography*
Leg / physiopathology,  ultrasonography*
Pregnancy / physiology*
Reference Values
Sensitivity and Specificity
Ultrasonography, Doppler*
Varicose Veins / physiopathology,  ultrasonography

From MEDLINE®/PubMed®, a database of the U.S. National Library of Medicine

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