Varicose veins are twisted and enlarged veins near the surface of the skin.
Varicose veins are enlarged veins, commonly found in legs and feet. Spider veins constitute a mild variation of varicose veins. Varicose veins are formed by increased pressure on the veins of the lower body. In some, varicose veins may cause pain and discomfort, and in few others it may lead to more serious circulatory problems. Treatment for varicose veins includes self care, medications and surgery.
Varicose veins condition is seen in older people and pregnant women. In older people due to weakening of the veins the flow of blood is reversed. In pregnant women, more blood flows from legs to pelvis to support the growing fetus, with the side effect predominantly seen as enlarged veins in the legs.
The veins at the affected area are dark purple or blue in color. They are twisted and bulging. Those with varicose veins feel heaviness in the legs. In some, there is burning, throbbing and muscle cramping, bleeding and swelling in the lower legs.
RISKS & COMPLICATIONS:
Varicose veins are seen in older people as they experience weakening of veins. Women experience hormonal changes during pregnancy, pre-menstruation or menopause which enhances the risk of varicose veins. Those with a family history of varicose veins are also at the risk of it. Also, people who are obese and those with long periods of sitting and standing are also at the risk of varicose disease. The complications of varicose veins are evident as ulcers, blood clots and bleeding. All cases of bleeding needs immediate medical attention as they are categorized as high-risk.
TESTS & DIAGNOSIS:
The doctor enquires about pain and heaviness in the legs. Later checks the affected area for varicose veins. The doctor may recommend for ultrasound to check the functioning of affected veins. A transducer (hand-held device) may be used to study the images of veins on the monitor.
The treatment for varicose veins includes self-care, compressive stockings and surgery. Varicose veins developed during pregnancy generally improve without medical treatment. Self-care includes exercise, weight loss, elevating legs, and avoiding long periods of standing or sitting. Compressive stockings helps to squeeze legs and helps to move blood more efficiently. Sclerotherapy, laser surgeries, ambulatory phlebectomy and endoscopic vein surgery are also recommended.