SYDNEY, Oct. 20, 2022 /PRNewswire/ — Pelvic pain is a common condition affecting millions of women around the world, with up to 40% affected during their lifetime. Of those affected, 30% suffer from Pelvic Venous Congestion Syndrome (PVCS). Boston Scientific has launched a new website that can help shed light on the condition, its causes, symptoms, and treatments options.
Unfortunately, due to a dearth of information and awareness of the syndrome by both sufferers and physicians, PVCS is frequently misdiagnosed, and many sufferers often go undiagnosed. PVCS is often mistaken for a host of other pelvic-related conditions because pelvic pain is far too common, and may be caused by problems related to the reproductive, gastrointestinal, or urinary systems. However, the presence of varicose veins in certain areas such as the vulva, vagina, inner thigh, and sometimes around the buttocks and down the leg may indicate PVCS.
PVCS: Lauren’s story
PVCS is when the ovarian and/or pelvic veins are dilated – not unlike varicose veins. Symptoms of PVCS are aplenty, with the most common being a dull, achy abdominal pain that gets worse after long periods of standing.
The risks for developing PVCS are similar to that of developing varicose veins, especially for women of childbearing age.
Varicose veins develop in about 8 – 20% of pregnant women, and this risk increases with each pregnancy (13% for first, 30% for second, and up to 57% thereafter).
“I started experiencing ongoing pain, pressure problems, and other symptoms when I was pregnant with my second child. For 3 years, I lived with persistent pain that drastically affected my life, both at home with my family and at work.”, shared Queensland resident Lauren Kempshall, 39.
Lauren’s GP referred her to a gynecologist on suspicion of endometriosis. However, her symptoms just didn’t match.
Eventually, Lauren got a referral to a vascular surgeon; a scan, together with other symptoms such as varicose veins in her upper thighs, got Lauren her diagnosis of pelvic congestion.
Pelvic Venous Congestion Syndrome (PVCS) must be diagnosed by a medical specialist such as an Interventional Radiologist (IR) or Vascular Surgeon (VS). This will begin with a thorough clinical history and physical examination, and, through a scan such as ultrasound or venography (looking at pelvic veins using contrast dye), a diagnosis will be made.
“Treatments of PVCS include medical therapy, surgical solutions and ovarian vein embolism which is a minimally invasive procedure with mild sedation – patients can usually be discharged a few hours post-surgery”, said Dr. Marek Garbowski from the Perth Vascular Clinic in Subiaco.
“Realizing the pain had gone after living with it for three long years was the most liberating feeling ever. I am back to living a normal happy life. I am me again.” – Lauren Kempshall
To learn more about PVCS and find specialists near you, Boston Scientific has a website to answer your questions. Visit www.venouspelvicpain.com.au to learn more.
- This material is for informational Purposes only and not meant for medical diagnosis. This information does not constitute medical or legal advice, and Boston Scientific makes no representation regarding the medical benefits included in this information. Boston Scientific strongly recommends that you consult with your physician on all matters pertaining to your health or to address any questions.
- Results from case studies are not necessarily predictive of results in other cases. Results in other cases may vary.
- The expressed view and opinion of patient belong to the patient. They do not represent the opinion of BSC.
- Dr Marek Garbowski and Lauren Kempshall are not compensated by Boston Scientific Corporation.
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SOURCE Boston Scientific