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May Thurner Syndrome Management

May Thurner Syndrome (MTS) is a condition in which the left iliac vein is compressed by the right iliac artery. The most common symptoms are leg swelling and discomfort. This vein compression can lead to blood clots, such as deep vein thrombosis.

NorthShore interventional radiology specialists provide a minimally invasive treatment option in which a stent is placed in the iliac vein to relieve compression and reduce your symptoms.

How to Prepare for May Thurner Syndrome Management

  • Arrive one hour before your procedure to get labs drawn.
  • Your interventional radiologist may request image testing to further examine the veins.
  • Please make note of any medication or blood thinners you are currently taking, as you may be required to stop a week before the procedure.

What to Expect

  • The procedure usually takes about an hour to complete.
  • You will be lightly sedated, but awake during the procedure.
  • Using ultrasound guidance, your interventional radiologist will make a small incision by the neck or groin to reach the femoral or jugular vein, and insert a thin tube (catheter) through it.
  • Your interventional radiologist will perform a venogram to evaluate the site and severity of the compression.
  • In some cases, your interventional radiologist will use an intravascular ultrasound (IVUS) to further evaluate the vein and degree of compression.
  • The treatment of this problem consists of placing a small metal cage, a stent, through the catheter into the artery, where it will press against the artery walls, holding them in place.
  • After stent placement, blood flow should begin to return to normal.

What to Expect after May Thurner Syndrome Management

  • You will recover in the hospital for one to two hours, and then you will be discharged.
  • You will need to rest for 4-5 days after which you will be able to return to your regular daily activities.
  • Your interventional radiologist will schedule a follow up appointment one week post-procedure, during which they will use an ultrasound to monitor the stent.
  • Afterwards, follow up appointments will be scheduled for every 3 months during the first year of the stent placement. After this, if required, follow ups will be 6 months apart. During these follow ups, your care team will use CT and MR scans to monitor the veins and blood flow, making sure no new clots have formed.

For More Information

For more information on May Thurner Syndrome management, or to schedule an appointment with an interventional radiologist, please call 847.570.2160.