Varicose and spider veins are twisted, bulging veins that often develop on the legs. Women are more prone than males to develop varicose and spider veins.
Pregnancy, advanced age, and obesity may all raise your chances of developing varicose and spider veins. Varicose and spider veins are normally painless and do not cause any health risks. Talk to https://westmedical.com/vein-treatment/ about treatment options if they cause symptoms or if you want them removed.
Muscle contractions in your lower legs work as pumps, and small valves in your veins open as blood moves toward your heart and shut to prevent blood from flowing backward. Weak or defective one-way valves cause varicose veins in the leg veins, which return blood from your extremities to your heart to be recirculated. The valves get weaker when the walls of a vein expand and become less flexible.
If the valves in the legs do not function correctly, blood rushes backward and pools in the veins, twisting and stretching them and developing varicose veins.
How are varicose veins diagnosed?
A simple physical examination may typically detect varicose veins; however, the reason for the varicose vein needs the use of Doppler (Duplex) ultrasound. Doppler ultrasonography is a non-invasive diagnostic that employs sound waves to examine blood flow via vein valves. Leg ultrasound may aid in the detection of a blood clot.
A healthcare clinician does this test by moving a tiny hand-held device (transducer) roughly the size of a bar of soap across the skin over the evaluated body region. The transducer sends pictures of the legs’ veins to a monitor, which shows the findings.
This non-invasive examination evaluates the groin valve function and may also measure how much blood goes back into the legs. The examination may also detect the anatomy of your leg veins and blood clots. This test might take anywhere from 20 to 30 minutes for each leg.
Your doctor will also do a physical assessment on you, including a look at your legs while you’re standing to check for edema. Your clinician may also ask you to detail any pain, leg discomfort or soreness.
Treatment options for varicose veins
Self-care techniques, compression socks, or non-invasive procedures may be used to treat varicose veins. Treatment for varicose veins is often performed as an outpatient surgery, which means you generally go home the same day.
Inquire with your insurance company to see whether varicose vein therapy is covered. If the primary objective of the varicose vein treatment is to enhance the look of the legs (for aesthetic reasons), the expense may not be reimbursed by insurance.
Self-care measures such as exercise, lifting the legs while sitting or lying down, and using compression stockings may help relieve varicose vein discomfort and prevent them from worsening.
Using compression stockings all day is a common initial step. The stockings cinch the legs, allowing veins and leg muscles to flow blood more effectively. The degree of compression varies depending on the kind and brand.
Most medical supply businesses and pharmacies carry compression socks. If varicose veins are causing problems, prescription-strength socks are also available and may be reimbursed by insurance.
Other treatments or surgeries
If self-care and compression stockings are ineffective, or if the varicose veins are severe, a healthcare practitioner may offer surgery or other procedures:
A medical professional injects a solution or foam into the varicose veins, scarring and closing them. The repaired varicose veins should diminish in a few weeks.
The doctor may inject the same vein more than once. Sclerotherapy does not need anesthesia and may be performed in a physician’s office.
Laser therapy delivers powerful bursts of light to the vein, causing it to diminish and vanish over time. You won’t need any cuts or needles.
Radiofrequency or laser energy is used in catheter-based treatments. For bigger varicose veins, this is the preferable therapy. A healthcare professional inserts a thin tube (catheter) into an enlarged vein and uses radiofrequency or laser radiation to heat the catheter’s tip. When the catheter is withdrawn, the heat causes the vein to compress and seal shut.
Vein stripping and high ligation
This method involves tying off a vein before it connects to a deep vein and then eliminating the vein by minor incisions. This is usually an outpatient operation. Removing the vein will not stop blood flow in the leg since deeper veins handle larger amounts of blood.
Phlebectomy on an outpatient basis
A doctor removes smaller varicose veins via a series of microscopic skin punctures. In this outpatient surgery, just the pierced areas of the leg are numbed. Scarring is usually minor.
Lifestyle and home remedies for varicose veins
- Exercise – Get your feet moving. Walking is an excellent strategy to increase blood flow in the legs. Your doctor may advise you on an acceptable degree of activity.
- Control your weight – Losing weight relieves needless strain on the veins.
- Avoid using salt – To avoid edema caused by water retention, eat a low-salt diet.
- Pick appropriate footwear – High heels should be avoided. Low-heeled shoes exert more strain on your calf muscles, which is excellent for your veins.
- Avoid wearing clothes that are too tight – Wearing clothing that is too tight around your waist, legs, or groin might restrict blood flow.
- Lift your legs – Take numerous brief pauses each day to lift the legs above the level of the heart to enhance blood flow in the legs. For instance, lay down with your legs propped up on three or four cushions.
- Avoid sitting or standing for extended periods – Alter your posture periodically to promote blood flow.
Despite not being well researched, various alternative remedies claim to be effective treatments for chronic venous insufficiency. This disorder is related to varicose veins, where the leg veins have difficulty returning blood to the heart. Alternative varicose vein treatments may include:
- Grape (leaves, sap, seed, and fruit)
- Butcher’s broom
- Sweet clover
- Horse chestnut
Before using any herb or dietary supplement, please consult your doctor to ensure it is safe and will not conflict with any drugs you take.