Reading about varicose veins and how it connects to venous disease can help you understand what you are experiencing, however for an accurate diagnosis and consultation it is best to see a professional; reach out to contact us. Please continue to read up on varicose veins below until your consult, we believe the more you know helps you understand the process and heal better.
Understanding Varicose Veins, a Venous Disease Symptom
Varicose veins usually appear on the legs, feet and ankles. They’re raised veins and are usually blue or purple underneath the skin. They’re far more common in women than in men. As mentioned they can be a symptom of venous disease. Varicose Veins are also more prevalent in people in professions that require standing, such as nurses or teachers. Other factors that influence this include: aging, obesity, pregnancy, trauma, genetic predisposition and leg surgery. It’s important to remember that there also are cosmetic benefits to removing varicose veins too. Learn more about varicose vein aesthetic procedures.
What causes Varicose Veins?
Healthy veins have a one-way flow of blood. A vein is essentially a hollow tube with two valves at either end that close off to ensure all the blood flows one way. What causes varicose veins—the blue or green twisted, bulging veins that typically appear on the legs—is when some of the blood pools inside the vein when the valve doesn’t prevent the blood from flowing in one direction. The blood backs up in the vein and causes bulging and the “twisted vein” appearance. As you age, you’re more likely to develop varicose veins. Pregnant women are also more likely to have them. A family history, of varicose veins, obesity and sitting or standing for prolonged periods of time also increases your risk.
For some, varicose veins are more than just unpleasant to look at. They also can be signs of serious circulation problem. If your varicose veins are accompanied by the following, you’ll want to seek out a doctor’s opinion:
How Do Varicose Veins Affect My Health?
- Legs that ache or feel heavy
- Burning, throbbing, swelling or muscle cramping in your legs
- Increased pain following long periods of sitting or standing
- Skin ulcers
- Blood clots
- Bleeding from the veins
How Do I Know If I have Varicose Veins?
To diagnose varicose veins and venous disease, the doctor will perform a physical exam where he or she looks for varicose veins on your legs. The doctor also will check for tender spots, ulcers and skin color changes. Expect to answer a few questions about your condition like, “when did this start?” or “how severe is your pain?”
You may receive an ultrasound so the doctor can see what way the blood is flowing.
Cosmetic Benefits for Varicose Veins
Besides the physical pain that come with varicose veins, varicose veins also can be unsightly. If you find that you’re always self-conscience about your legs and can’t wear shorts or swim wear in public, you may want to consider having the varicose veins removed. Many of the treatments are minimally invasive and can make you feel better about yourself in no time. If you feel your varicose veins are holding you back, contact us to schedule a treatment so you can feel and look your best.
What Treatment for Varicose Veins is Best for Me?
Treatment options will vary from surgical to non-surgical and could be as simple as simple as compression socks. These tight socks can help boost circulation and are noninvasive. Treating varicose veins is a way we can treat the larger issue of venous disease. Below see what the different treatments for varicose veins and venous disease look like.
Lifestyle Changes as a Treatment for Varicose Veins
Exercising regularly also can help ease those symptoms. If swelling is a problem, try placing your feet and legs above your head. Losing weight and exercising also can help.
Sclerotherapy as a Treatment for Varicose Veins
During a sclerotherapy procedure, your doctor will inject your varicose veins with a liquid agent that closes the veins. The veins should fade away in a few weeks. You won’t need anesthesia and this can be performed at the office.
Laser Therapy as a Treatment for Varicose Veins
During laser therapy, a technician will use a laser to destroy varicose veins with heat. The heat may cause scar tissue to form, which eventually closes off the vein. You can expect to feel minor pain, discoloration of the skin and there may be blistering. Laser therapy typically does take longer to work than other methods. You’ll most likely need more than one session to see results.
Endovenous Laser Ablation as a Treatment for Varicose Veins
Endovenous laser ablation is a great option for those who’d rather not have surgery. A tiny laser fiber is placed inside the vein and then the laser delivers light that causes the vein to collapse.
Vein Stripping to as a Treatment for Varicose Veins
During this procedure, a doctor removes a vein by using many small incisions, ties wire to the vein and then removes the vein. The doctor will close the cuts with stitches.
Catheter-assisted Procedures as Treatments for Varicose Veins
During this treatment, a doctor will insert a catheter inside the vein, heat the tip and then pull the catheter out—killing the vein in the process. This is usually only performed on larger veins.
Radiofrequency ablation or VNUS Closure as a Treatment for Varicose Veins
During this method, a small catheter delivers radiofrequency energy to the vein wall—instead of laser energy—which causes the vein to collapse. It’s minimally invasive and most patients experience less post-operative pain, bruising and discomfort when compared with other methods. The recovery time is usually two days or less. You won’t typically be required to stay at the hospital.
Surgery as a Treatment for Varicose Veins
If varicose veins don’t respond to laser or sclerotherapy, surgery might be an option. Normally, surgery includes cutting off the vein and removing it. General or local anesthesia can be used. If the vein is close to the skin’s surface, it can be removed through an incision that doesn’t need stitches. Recovery is fast.