Phlebitis - Causes

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What causes phlebitis?

Phlebitis has many causes. Some of the common causes of phlebitis are:

  • local trauma or injury to the vein
  • prolonged inactivity, such as, long driving or plane rides
  • insertion of intravenous catheters (IV) in hospitals, or IV induced phlebitis
  • period after a surgery (post-operative period), especially orthopedic procedures
  • prolonged immobility, as in hospitalized or bed-ridden patients
  • varicose veins
  • underlying cancers or clotting disorders
  • disruption of normal venous system drainage because of removal of lymph nodes, for example, after mastectomy for breast cancer
  • intravenous drug use
  • patients with burns
Return to Phlebitis

See what others are saying

Comment from: 75 or over Male (Patient) Published: February 04

When I sit at a chair for a long period of time it hurts in the back of the legs (more right than left).

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Comment from: gmitch, 55-64 Female (Patient) Published: April 17

I started with phlebitis symptoms 8 weeks ago. On the side of my calf, I had a hard lump with redness and swelling that would occasionally show up around my ankle. I had an ultrasound; there was no deep vein thrombosis. Doctor wanted me to spend a week with my leg elevated, apply heat and take ibuprofen (I'm allergic to aspirin and have just recently been able to take Aleve). I tried my best to stay off my feet; hard to do as I"m very active and at 56 working cleaning houses. I believe I might have bumped my leg the same day I rode in the car on a long trip; maybe that caused the phlebitis. I will see the doctor today again. Hope this clears up soon.

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