Most people believe that varicose veins only affect older people, such as those above the age of 55. However, varicose veins are incredibly common and can develop in younger persons. On top of this, many don’t understand what it means to have this issue.
So, what are varicose veins, exactly? Why do they occur, and what can a person do if they develop this problem?
Varicose veins are enlarged veins, usually in the legs or feet, that appear twisted, gnarled, or protrude from the skin’s surface. It is not known why they occur, and there is no cure. The only option for people who have them and want to get rid of them is to have a procedure.
Though the most common veins affected are in the legs, varicose veins can occur in any vein in the body. They develop when the valves in the vein stop working properly.
Usually, these valves open and close in order to help the blood circulate from the lower extremities back up to the heart and lungs. The valves prevent the blood from flowing backward and pooling in the legs and feet. People with faulty valves in their veins will experience this backflow, which stretches and enlarges the lower veins.
Varicose veins often do not cause any symptoms. The only worrisome aspect of the condition for many people is the undesirable appearance of the twisted veins that may appear just under the skin’s surface.
On the other hand, other people do experience pain and symptoms from varicose veins. Common symptoms include a heavy, achy feeling in the legs and feet; a burning or throbbing sensation; muscle cramping in the legs; itchy areas around the affected veins; and pain after standing or sitting for long periods of time.
Sometimes, varicose veins are a sign of an underlying circulatory condition. People who develop ulcers near the ankle, experience hardening of the veins, inflammation of the skin surrounding the veins, or color changes may need special medical care.
Vein treatment for varicose veins can range from home remedies and lifestyle changes to outpatient procedures to surgery. Depending on how severe the condition is and how worried the patient is about the appearance of their varicose veins, a doctor may recommend different treatments.
In general, surgery is reserved for extreme cases. Most people with varicose veins can get vein treatment in Deerfield with new innovations like laser treatment, which is non-invasive and has a quick recovery time. This is preferable to vein stripping, which, in contrast, is more drastic, more painful, and requires longer recovery.
Most people with varicose veins will only have to worry about them cosmetically. They will need to determine if the appearance of the veins bothers them enough to get them treated.