What are varicose veins? Symptoms, treatment and prevention.

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  • Varicose veins in the legs In addition to beauty It also results in aches and pains and discomfort. This can sometimes lead to serious, life-threatening problems.  
  • If varicose veins in the legs interfere with daily life There is pain and swelling. Tenderness or skin starting to thicken turn dark You should see a doctor immediately for proper diagnosis and treatment. 
  • You can prevent the occurrence of varicose veins yourself by exercising regularly. Wear support stockings Avoid sitting or standing for long periods of time. Reduce eating salty foods. Increase your intake of foods high in potassium and flavonoids.  
What are varicose veins? Symptoms, treatment and prevention.

What is varicose veins?

Dr. Anita Nittiranon A doctor specializing in skin and laser treatment at Samitivej Sukhumvit Hospital stated that varicose veins (Varicose Veins) is a condition where the veins near the skin layer expand abnormally. until visible as a line resembling a spider’s web or seen as bulging blood vessels Varicose veins can occur in many organs of the body, with varicose veins in the legs. It is the most common condition of varicose veins. Approximately 1 in 4 adults in the United States have varicose veins, and more than 23% are affected by varicose veins.  

In addition to beauty problems Varicose veins in the legs can also cause aches and pains and discomfort. Sometimes varicose veins can lead to serious problems. If varicose veins in the legs interfere with daily life Found pain and swelling. Tenderness or skin starting to thicken turn dark You should see a doctor immediately for proper diagnosis and treatment. 

Varicose veins in the legs What are the symptoms?

Symptoms of varicose veins in the legs manifest in a variety of ways. Even though the โปรโมชั่น ufabet bulging blood vessels can be seen until having chronic varicose ulcers This is a severe varicose vein condition that is difficult to cure. Varicose veins in the legs are most commonly found in the calves and are divided into 2 types: 

  1. Coiled capillaries resembling spider webs (Spider Veins)  are varicose veins on the legs in the early stages. Caused by coiled capillaries that look like purple or red spider webs. It can also be found on the face. and have different sizes  
  2. Varicose veins look like bulging veins (Varicose Veins)  because the vein walls lose their elasticity. As a result, the blood vessels bulge and curl into jagged edges. Seen as green or green mixed with purple, approximately 1-3 millimeters in size. 

Warning signs of varicose veins include:

  • Veins that are dark purple or blue 
  • Blood vessels that appear twisted and bulging They often appear as lines around the calves. 
  • Feeling of pain in the legs and calves.  
  • Feeling that your legs are heavy or uncomfortable 
  • Burning pain, muscle and joint pain, swollen feet 
  • The pain is worse after sitting or standing for a long time. 
  • Dry, itchy skin around blood vessels  
  • Changes in skin color around varicose veins 
  • Leg cramps, especially at night 
  • The above symptoms are often worse in warm weather.  

Causes of varicose veins in the legs

Arteries carry blood from the heart to the rest of the body, while veins carry blood from other parts of the body. of the body back to the heart

The contraction of the muscles in the lower leg acts as a pump. And the flexible walls of the arteries allow blood to flow back to the heart. Tiny valves in the arteries open as blood flows back to the heart. It is then closed to stop blood from flowing back. If the valve that blocks blood from flowing back is weak or damaged, Blood may flow back and collect in the blood vessels. This causes blood vessels to stretch or twist.

The blood vessels furthest from the heart are those in the legs. often affected This is because gravity makes it more difficult for blood to flow back to the heart. Additionally, sitting or standing for long periods of time It may cause blood to accumulate in the blood vessels in the legs. Increases the pressure within the blood vessels. As a result, the venous walls in the legs become weak and damaged. It is the source of varicose veins in the legs.

What causes varicose veins? Factors that cause varicose veins

Varicose veins are caused by both physical and lifestyle factors as follows: 

  • When you get older The valves within the blood vessels that help control blood flow begin to deteriorate. This causes blood to flow back and accumulate in the peripheral blood vessels until it becomes varicose veins.
  • Women are more likely than men to have varicose veins. This is because female hormones affect the flexibility of the vein walls.
  • Hormone treatments, such as birth control pills, may increase your risk of varicose veins.
  • Heredity passed on from parents or family members with a history of varicose veins.
  • Being overweight puts pressure on your blood vessels.
  • Standing or sitting for long periods of time Resulting in more varicose veins.
  • Wearing high heels It causes poor blood circulation. Including sitting with legs crossed regularly. This causes the blood vessels in the legs to be compressed.
  • Any condition that puts pressure on the abdominal cavity can cause varicose veins, such as pregnancy, constipation, tumors.

Possible complications from varicose veins

Complications of varicose veins Although it is difficult to find But it can still be found. That may include  

  • The formation of painful ulcers on the skin near the varicose veins. Especially near the ankle. It is often found that the skin changes color before the wound develops.  
  • Chances are that other blood vessels The inside of the leg may become enlarged. This can result in leg pain and swelling. You should see a doctor immediately if you experience frequent pain or swelling in your legs. This may be a sign of a blood clot. 
  • The blood vessels close to the skin appear to be broken. Even if it causes only a little blood. But you should also see a doctor. 

Dangerous complications from varicose veins

Dangerous complications that may be encountered include the following: 

  • Deep Vein Thrombosis (DVT)  is a serious condition in which blood clots form in the deep veins. If you have severe varicose veins, There is a chance that blood clots will form in the veins. Symptoms of this condition include pain, swelling and redness in the legs. Blood clots can form in the arm or other parts. of the body If you have such symptoms You should see a doctor immediately.
  • Pulmonary Embolism Pulmonary Embolism  Pulmonary embolism is very serious and can cause death. Symptoms include chest pain, difficulty breathing, coughing (may be coughing up blood), fast heartbeat, sweating, and fainting. If you have any symptoms this could mean a blood clot in your lungs. You should seek emergency help. or go to the hospital as soon as possible

When should I see a doctor?

Usually, varicose veins in the legs are not serious and do not require treatment. But if symptoms begin to affect daily life including beauty feel pain or have any of these symptoms, it may be necessary to see a doctor.

  • Varicose veins cause pain or discomfort.
  • There is a burning sensation in the skin around the varicose veins.
  • Leg pain causes irritation at night and disrupts sleep

Diagnosis of varicose veins

In addition to medical history and physical examination Additional steps for diagnosing varicose veins This can be done by ultrasound of the blood vessels. To check blood flow and the structure of blood vessels in the legs

How to treat varicose veins

In cases where initial treatment for varicose veins is ineffective or if you feel severe discomfort The doctor may consider the following treatments:  

Taking medicine to relieve varicose veins  in the Diosmin and Hesperidin groups can reduce inflammation of the veins. normalizes the valves in the veins Especially small varicose veins  

Wearing medical stockings for varicose veins (Compression stocking)  while doing various activities. Except during bedtime And elevate your toes when sleeping. 

laser treatment  It is often used to close small veins and spider veins. The concentrated laser light is directed towards the blood vessels, causing them to gradually fade away.  

chemical injection (Sclerotherapy)  where the doctor injects chemicals into small and medium sized varicose veins. This causes the scar to close and close. The varicose veins will fade within 2-3 weeks. More than one intravenous injection may be needed. 

Endoscopic transilluminator thread lift This uses a special light that passes through an incision under the skin to allow the doctor to see which blood vessels need to be removed. The target blood vessel is then cut and removed using a suction device through the wound. using general anesthesia or local anesthesia After surgery there may be bleeding and bruising. 

radio frequency surgery  with a small wound Above or below the knee with an ultrasound scan Then a small pipe was threaded. or catheter into a blood vessel Then radio frequency energy is released into the catheter. The radio frequency energy causes the blood vessels to heat up. effectively closing the wall This procedure is suitable for large varicose veins. 

Varicose vein stripping  is surgery to remove varicose veins. It is suitable for very large and long varicose veins. which cannot be treated with injections into the varicose veins This method can also prevent recurrence. 

Endoscopic surgery It is an operation where a small video camera is inserted into the leg to help the surgeon see better. and remove damaged blood vessels Most patients can go home the same day. However, if both legs need to be operated on, You may have to stay in the hospital for one night. 

How to prevent varicose veins

Varicose veins can be prevented as follows:

Avoid wearing high heels for a long time. 

Change your sitting or standing position regularly. 

Eat foods that are high in fiber. Including reducing the intake of extremely salty foods because too much sodium can cause swelling. 

Low-impact exercises help your calf muscles work without excessive fatigue, such as swimming, walking, cycling, and yoga. 

Control your weight to be within the appropriate range. 

Avoid clothing that is too tight. Especially around the waist, groin, and upper legs, as this may cause blood flow back to the heart to not be as good as it should be. 

Wear supportive stockings. This provides slight pressure to increase pressure on leg muscles and stimulate blood flow. A 2018 study found that people who used support stockings for one week The pain from varicose veins decreases.  

Adding foods high in potassium such as almonds, pistachios, and bananas can help with varicose veins by reducing water retention in the body. and helps control blood pressure Therefore, it is beneficial to the health of the heart and blood vessels. 

Increase foods that contain flavonoids. Flavonoids improve blood circulation. Makes blood flow well and reduces the chance of blood accumulating in the arteries. In addition, it also helps reduce blood pressure in the arteries. Foods high in flavonoids include vegetables, including onions, bell peppers, spinach, and broccoli. Citrus fruits and grapes, cherries, apples and blueberries. Including cocoa, garlic 

Raise your legs to heart height or higher. along with wagging the ankles up and down To help the circulatory system improve. Blood returns to the heart better. As a result, the pressure in the blood vessels in the legs decreases. And gravity helps blood flow smoothly back to the heart. You can do this after work or before bed. 

Gently massage your legs or calves. Helps blood flow through the blood vessels better. And it’s a great way to relax tight muscles after working all day. You can use pure, gentle essential oils and your favorite scent as well. To relax both body and mind 

It is important to avoid putting direct pressure on the blood vessel. This can cause damage to delicate tissues. 

Although most varicose veins in the legs are harmless and do not require treatment, But the effects of blood clots that can occur when having varicose veins can be life-threatening. Therefore, if varicose veins are found in the legs, it signals a serious signal. or cause pain and interfere with daily life You should consult a medical professional to determine the cause and provide further treatment.