The inferior vena cava (IVC) is the largest vein in the body and the blood vessel that transports blood from the lower extremities (including the legs) back to the heart. When your cardiovascular system is healthy, a blockage in the IVC is unlikely. However, if you are a deep vein thrombosis patient or at risk of clotting for other reasons, potentially dangerous blockages can occur.
In many cases, the standard treatment for patients at risk of clotting is prescription blood thinners. However, these medications are not suitable for some patients. For these individuals, Dr. Vargas makes IVC filters available – small devices that fit in the inferior vena cava and prevent potentially dangerous clots from traveling to the heart and lungs.