Blood thinners are the most common treatment for blood clots. However, if you’re not a good candidate for the medication, you may need an inferior vena cava (IVC) filter to treat your blood clots. Once the risk of blood clots passes, you may benefit from IVC filter removal to reduce the risk of complications related to the medical device. Vascular and Interventional Associates in Crestview Hills, Kentucky, features a team of board-certified vascular and interventional radiologists who expertly perform IVC filter removal using minimally invasive techniques at their state-of-the-art facility. To schedule a consultation with the experienced team, call the office or book an appointment online today.
Your IVC, also called the pelvic vein, is the largest vein in your body and carries oxygen-deprived blood from your lower extremities back to your heart and lungs.
Blood clots that form in your veins may travel to your IVC and then on to your lungs, causing a blockage in your pulmonary artery, which leads to a life-threatening condition called a pulmonary embolism.
In most cases, blood thinners are prescribed to treat blood clots and prevent any related health complications. However, if your blood clot can’t be treated with medication or you’re not a good candidate for blood thinners, an IVC filter may be recommended.
The IVC filter is a small mesh device vascular surgeons place in your IVC. The mesh-like filter traps blood clots without affecting the normal flow of blood. Over time, your body’s natural anticoagulants dissolve the blood clots.
Though an IVC filter may save your life, it may increase your risk of developing other health complications if it’s left in place. The team at Vascular and Interventional Associates recommends IVC filter removal once your blood clots have passed.
Removing your IVC filter when it’s no longer medically necessary reduces your risk of developing any associated complications, such as the formation of additional blood clots. Your IVC filter may also break or cause discomfort if the legs of the filter pierce the wall of your vein.
The team at Vascular and Interventional Associates performs your IVC filter removal at the state-of-the-art interventional radiology lab using advanced minimally invasive techniques. Before the procedure, the team recommends preoperative imaging studies to evaluate the status of your filter.
The team performs your IVC filter removal under moderate sedation. After monitoring you in the recovery area for a short time, they send you home.
You may feel tired and experience some pain after your IVC filter removal. However, you should be able to return to work and most of your usual activities within 1-2 days. The team may suggest some activity modification based on your needs and usual routine.
To learn more about IVC filter removal, call Vascular and Interventional Associates or use the online tool to book an appointment.