Varicose veins are enlarged veins that return blood from the outer part of the body back to the heart. When veins become abnormally thick, they are called varicose veins. The veins that mostly become affected are those found in the leg. This is because when you walk upright or stand, this increases the pressure in the veins of your lower body.
The thickened part of the vein is normally referred to as varicosities. This condition is mostly inherited and becomes formed as you grow older. It may cause aching while sometimes it can lead to more serious complications. The presence of varicose veins may be a sign of a higher risk of various circulatory complications. Below is varicose veins explained more.
What causes varicose veins?
Varicose veins is often a hereditary condition that mostly affects women. Some of the hormonal factors that may affect the disease include:
- Age – As people get older, their veins begin losing elasticity resulting to them stretching. This may lead to the valves becoming weak and, therefore, allowing blood to flow backwards instead of moving towards your heart.
- Pregnancy – Pregnancy tends to increase the amount of blood in the body, however, the flow of it from the legs to the pelvis decreases. Though this normally happens to support the fetus, it also enlarges the veins in legs.
Some of the other predisposing factors include obesity, standing or sitting for longer periods, and if your family has a history of varicose veins and your sex. Women are more likely to develop varicose veins.
Symptoms of varicose veins explained
Most people tend to lack symptoms of this condition. The only visible sign of it may be their embarrassing appearance. Apart from that, the most predominant symptoms of varicose veins may include discomfort, aching and feeling heavy on the legs. The latter may become worse at the end of the day, sometimes leading to swelling in the ankles.
If these symptoms become very troublesome, you may seek medical attention for it to be treated. Sometimes, the high pressure on the skin may cause damage to the skin on the ankles causing them to turn into a brown color. Some of the other problems that may result from varicose veins include phlebitis, bleeding, and deep thrombosis.
Varicose veins can be treated by Operation, Endovenous Laser Therapy, Foam Sclerotherapy, and Radiofrequency ablation. These methods of treatment require duplex scanning as a part of their selection procedure and the monitoring of the procedure. After surgery, there may be a risk of developing deep vein thrombosis which can be reduced by being mobile after the operation and wearing a compression stocking.