One of the nightmares of women in particular, due to aesthetics and also the discomfort and pain in some cases, varicose veins can occur in men and women of all age groups, ethnicities and financial conditions. Most people aim at the appearance that is not at all pleasant and, moreover, the tiredness in the legs, but they are not aware of the causes and risks of varicose veins. Therefore, we will clarify the types of varicose veins, main causes, symptoms and treatments indicated to solve them.
What Are Varicose Veins?
Varicose veins are veins that dilate and become deformed, gaining a different color with a bluish appearance. They can occur in any vein of the body, but it is more common to appear in the legs and feet , causing sensitivity, pain and swelling in the area . They are more common to happen in people who spend long periods of standing or sitting in the same position for a long time.
The veins located in the legs are responsible for bringing blood circulation back to the heart, after irrigating the lower limbs. It has a function similar to that of a valve, which prevents the return of blood in the area of the feet, even due to gravity. But this functionality is sometimes unable to work as it should, causing a “pooling” of blood in some veins, causing deformities, changes in the skin and a lot of swelling.
IMPORTANT: Varicose veins tend to worsen symptoms and discomfort during the menstrual period and during the gestational phase, due to the increased pressure in the bloodstream.
The occurrence of varicose veins can have variations, which are the spider veins. The appearance of spider veins are the variations considered mild in varicose veins, but they serve as an indication to stay alert and follow medical instructions on how to relieve them, before they get worse.
Main Causes of Varicose Veins
As we have already mentioned, varicose veins are veins that undergo a dilation process, and usually occur in the most superficial part of the skin, which is why they are so evident. But among the factors and
main causes of the appearance of varicose veins is genetic influence. Due to genetic inheritance and family predisposition , it is possible to have more fragile and sensitive veins, which over the years and the advancing age are predisposed to the appearance of varicose veins.
In minor cases, varicose veins can be a strong indication of more serious problems and diseases that require specific medical treatment. Between them:
- Blockage in the veins;
- Blood clots;
- Changes in blood vessels (arteriovenous fistulas);
- Indications of Tumors.
In addition to the main causes, there are risk groups that are more likely to develop varicose veins and suffer from all their discomforts. Among them are:
- Gestational period ;
- Advanced age;
- Overweight / obesity;
- Family History;
- Spend long periods of standing or sitting in the same position;
- History of thrombosis ;
- Diseases that cause increased pressure in the abdomen (heart failure, liver disease );
If you are part of the risk group and have a family history of varicose veins, be on the lookout for signs and if in doubt or suspicion, seek immediate medical attention for evaluation and, if necessary, more specific tests for diagnosis.
Varicose Vein Symptoms
It is not very difficult to notice the presence of varicose veins, so the symptoms are considered to be clear. In addition to the bluish and dilated veins below a thin layer of skin, visibly seen with the naked eye, they may be accompanied by other symptoms such as:
- Pain in the legs ;
- Feeling of heaviness in the legs;
- Burning sensation in the area;
- Swelling, usually in the feet and ankles;
- Intense itching on the area of the dilated varicose veins.
These are the symptoms considered normal and unconcerning, but some other signs may indicate a worsening of the condition of the veins, providing a more serious risk to the patient. Stay tuned if:
- Swelling and severe pain in the calf after sitting or standing for a long time;
- Accumulation of fluid in the legs, causing great swelling;
- Dry skin, due to swelling and become very stretched;
- Change in the color of the skin around the legs and ankles;
All these changes and aggravating varicose veins can intensify in the menstrual period or in the gestational period. Therefore, if you are part of the risk group or have already been suffering from the appearance of varicose veins, talk to your doctor to follow the best treatment and follow-up, thus avoiding more serious disorders to health and also to the patient’s comfort.
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Some precautions are recommended to relieve the discomfort and pain caused by the appearance of varicose veins. The practice of physical exercises, in addition to improving all health and strengthening of the body and organism, work to improve blood circulation. Wearing compression stockings and raising your legs throughout the day, help to relieve the pain caused by varicose veins and also prevent the condition from getting worse.
The doctors who should be contacted to monitor the varicose veins are: vascular surgeon and angiologist. A clinical evaluation and a study of possibilities will be carried out to find out the causes. Therefore, it is important to answer all the questions asked, such as how long the varicose veins appeared, if you feel pain, if something still aggravates the discomfort or family history of varicose and cardiovascular diseases.
The diagnosis of varicose veins is carried out through analysis of the skin and the appearance of varicose veins, where legs and feet will be evaluated, in addition to other areas that may be affected. A search will be made for possible swelling, changes in the color of the skin, ruptures in the skin , ulcers or any alteration considered abnormal. You may be asked to move around the office and make different movements to watch the blood flow.
After evaluation, in case of suspected varicose veins, complementary exams may be indicated to confirm the diagnosis and verify the severity. Normally, venous color doppler ultrasound of the lower limbs is indicated , which can check the entire blood circulation of the area in real time.
After all recommended care, if it has no effect, specific treatments for solution may be indicated, such as sclerotherapy, which is a non-surgical procedure to treat varicose veins. Through the injection of a substance in the affected area, a scar is formed in the vein, solving the problem of blood circulation in the varicose vein.
Or surgical intervention, which is treated individually for each person. There are the options of laser surgery, conventional, echo guided foam, radio frequency or a mini surgery with application of local anesthesia. The procedure indicated will depend on the severity of the varicose veins and the best indication of the treatment made by the doctor to be monitored. The sooner you make the diagnosis and carry out the treatment, the simpler the treatment is.
Complications of Varicose Veins
If prevention is not carried out, and treatment is not done in time, varicose veins can bring serious complications to the patient’s life. Some of the complications are: ulcers, bleeding, extremely dry skin due to swelling and constant stretching of the skin and abundant itching. Skin that is more final and fragile than normal , which can hurt more easily, changes in skin color in the area of varicose veins and risks of bacterial and fungal infections resulting from the accumulation of liquid in the skin. The most worrying complication are clots that can lead to the development of deep vein thrombosis , which can lead to pulmonary embolism and even death.
My name is Dr. Alexis Hart I am 38 years old, I am the mother of 3 beautiful children! Different ages, different phases 16 years, 12 years and 7 years. In love with motherhood since always, I found it difficult to make my dreams come true, and also some more after I was already a mother.
Since I imagined myself as a mother, in my thoughts everything seemed to be much easier and simpler than it really was, I expected to get pregnant as soon as I wished, but it wasn’t that simple. The first pregnancy was smooth, but my daughter’s birth was very troubled. Joana was born in 2002 with a weight of 2930kg and 45cm, from a very peaceful cesarean delivery but she had already been born with congenital pneumonia due to a broken bag not treated with antibiotics even before delivery.