Vein care practitioners recognize that one of the most pressing issues facing the specialty is awareness. It is important to educate the public about venous disease while ensuring that medical professionals have a clear understanding about it as well. It is the pursuit of enhancing awareness that lead to the creation of the American Vein and Lymphatic Society (AVLS) and subsequently the Foundation for Venous and Lymphatic Disease (FVLD).
Many medical professionals consider venous disease to be a minor concern, not recognizing the impact that these issues can have on a patient’s quality of life or that venous disease may cause major morbidity and can even be life-threatening. For this reason, many patients are not aware that they do not need to endure their disease; it can be managed with treatment.
The AVLS was founded in 1985 as part of an effort to change the professional image of the specialty of phlebology within North American medicine. It is now the world’s largest organization dedicated to the specialty. The Society is committed to the advancement of phlebology by providing professional, educational and research expertise to medical practitioners with the aim of elevating the standards of patient care.
Between 1985 and 2005, the Society's leadership prepared to institute a variety of growth initiatives which would have a profound impact on professional, patient and public awareness of venous disease. In planning such efforts, the Society recognized that to realize such dreams would require a dedicated partner capable of bringing funding to these efforts without compromising the ethical standards of the AVLS or the medical profession.
In 2006, the time had come to pursue such interests and the FLVD was created. The Foundation exists to support, through investment, initiatives and projects that will advance the level of patient care in venous disease.
Due largely to the efforts of the AVLS and FVLD, major technological breakthroughs in diagnosis, minimally invasive treatment and post treatment regimens have had a major impact on patient care throughout the last decade. Progress in the understanding and management of venous disease continues at a rapid pace.