This is a deformation and malfunction of the leg veins. In a normal state, the blood in the veins moves from the bottom up, this is achieved through the contractions of the heart, the coordinated work of the elastic walls of the vessel, the muscles around the vessel and the valve in the vein. This valve allows blood to flow upward and prevents it from flowing in the opposite direction. In case of violations, the vessel walls expand, the valve space diverges, and the blood can partially move in the opposite direction, creating a counter-current, further expanding the vessel walls and weakening the valve. Varicose veins appear. The disease is extremely common among people over the age of 30, and very often women suffer from it.
Causes and prevention of varicose veins of the lower limbs
The causes of varicose veins lie in most cases in a sedentary lifestyle: we are in a static position for a long time (especially sitting), we do not give the necessary load to the muscles. The following risk factors may also affect:
- excessively tight clothing (trousers, knee-highs),
- uncomfortable shoes (especially high heels),
- hormonal imbalance,
- frequent hot baths, sauna visits,
- serious long-term physical activity, weight lifting,
The main prevention of varicose veins is to maintain a healthy lifestyle. Even if you have a sedentary job, try not to sit still for several hours at a time: get up, stretch your legs, walk more; and do not forget about a balanced diet, which, together with moderate physical activity, will save you from many diseases.
Pregnancy is also a major risk factor for varicose veins. But genetic predisposition is still being studied, there are also a number of studies that disprove it.
The disease can develop very slowly: over the course of years or even decades. The symptoms of the initial phase are varied, but for convenience they are combined in a certain complex under a general feeling of heaviness in the legs:
- tired legs without severe stress,
- sore veins,
- nocturnal calf cramps
- pulling the sensations in the legs.
If you do not follow the symptoms of varicose veins in the initial stage, the vein will deform more and more. In the evening, swelling in the feet and ankles will begin to appear, moving on to the morning; spider veins will become visible and then you will feel swollen veins and nodules on them. If you do not go to a specialist at this stage, in addition to a noticeable decrease in the quality of life, an obvious pain syndrome, a person risks getting skin pigmentation and trophic ulcers. The further course of varicose veins brings such complications as bleeding from the venous nodes and the risk of developing such a serious disease as thrombosis, which can be fatal without referral to a specialist.
Diagnosis of varicose veins is quite simple: it is a survey, a patient examination and an ultrasound, which will show the affected area of the vein and the degree of damage to select the optimal treatment. If for some reason (for example, when the damaged veins are located deep down), the ultrasound does not provide all the necessary information, the specialist will carry out an additional examination - phlebography - the introduction of a contrast agent into the vein, which will showthe smallest changes in the vein along the bloodstream under X-rays.
Treatment of varicose veins of the lower limbs
Non-surgical treatment of varicose veins (special physical exercises, massage, wearing compression underwear, taking drugs to strengthen the walls of blood vessels) will help only at the initial stage. But, unfortunately, very few patients go to a specialist at this time. Perhaps due to such a widespread prevalence of the disease, many either rely on alternative treatment methods that have not proven their effectiveness and are wasting valuable time, or resign themselves to varicose veins to an unbearable pain syndrome, signaling a stageadvanced.
Surgical treatment of varicose veins, like any other surgery, requires a highly trained team of doctors to guide the patient. After all, it is possible to find serious contraindications for the operation, so trust your health only to experienced specialists in well-equipped medical centers.
For our patients, we are ready to provide all known and clinically proven treatment methods: from conservative (non-surgical) to operative ones. Among the most effective are:
- laser coagulation (removal with a laser, that is, by exposure to heat of areas of dilated vessels) - this method is suitable for small vessels and for removing the veins of spiders located near the surface of the skin;
- sclerotherapy (injection of a special substance into a vein that blocks it safely): this method is only suitable for small peripheral vessels;
- phlebectomy is a surgical removal of the affected area of a vein; is used in the advanced stages of the disease in the large veins;
- radiofrequency coagulation.
The choice of treatment method depends on many factors (abandonment of varicose veins, condition of the patient, contraindications to manipulations). Specialists try to provide the patient with the most detailed information about his condition, listen to wishes and decide on the method of treatment appropriate to the specific situation.