Varicose veins: symptoms and treatment

feeling of heaviness in the legs with varicose veins

Varicose veins are called varicose veins, accompanied by changes in the tissues of the vessels (thinning, fragility, the formation of nodules). In the absence of adequate treatment, the disease progresses, which is expressed in the formation of a capillary network, the walls of venous vessels thicken and stretch. The next stage in the development of pathology is the deterioration of the venous valves and a violation of the blood supply to tissues and organs.

Types of varicose veins

According to statistics, every fourth person on Earth suffers from varicose veins to one degree or another. The disease is classified according to several criteria:

  • According to the localization of the disease - varicose veins of the upper extremities, lower extremities, reticular, genitals, small pelvis.
  • By the depth of the flow - intradermal, large and small veins, subcutaneous.
  • International classification by classes, where grade 0 - the disease has no clinical symptoms, but the patient complains of pain in the legs. The last, 6th grade, describes the most severe stage of the pathology (the constant discovery of new non-healing scars and ulcers, progressing in size).
treatment of varicose veins in the leg

Development of pathology

The stages of the course of the disease are classified as follows:

  • Compensatory.The patient complains of pulling pains in the lower extremities, feels discomfort, unprovoked fatigue of the legs. On examination, the doctor may notice spider veins, swollen veins in one or both legs.
  • Subcompensatory.The patient develops night cramps, a feeling of pressure inside the vessels, a feeling of numbness in the calf muscles, periodic swelling of the ankles, feet or legs.
  • Decompensatory.Changes in skin color (local pigmentation), ulcerative lesions of varying degrees, pronounced bulging of veins in the form of bumps, burning sensation, acute pain syndrome in the extremities are added to the already existing complaints and symptoms.
varicose veins

Reasons for the appearance

The origin and development of the disease is based on a whole range of causes. Sometimes a change in lifestyle is enough to provoke an illness, but there are also congenital pathologies. Experts believe that the following factors are prerequisites:

  • Heredity. At risk are people whose blood relatives suffered from varicose veins, the pathology in descendants manifests itself in 70% of cases.
  • Professional activity in some cases causes varicose veins. Symptoms are most often seen in patients whose job requires them to sit or stand for long periods of time (drivers, teachers, office workers, hairdressers).
  • Excessive physical activity. The risk category includes professional athletes, dancers and people whose occupation requires frequent heavy lifting or heavy physical labor.
  • Disruption of the cardiovascular system, in particular the vascular valves. Valves are small "valves" placed on the walls of blood vessels that allow blood to rise up the vein and prevent it from returning, closing after each portion of blood. With insufficient closure of the valves, the blood enters back and stagnation occurs, which leads to the expansion of the vein, the weakening of its walls.
  • Walking in uncomfortable shoes (high heels, no heels at all), tight clothes (pulling body parts, tightening corsets or underwear), excess weight.
  • Vascular diseases (thrombosis, thrombophlebitis, phlebitis, atherosclerosis), inflammation of the veins, damage to the walls of the veins, etc.

Complications

A number of diseases are characterized by a chronic course, including varicose veins. Symptoms detected at an early stage of the disease will help the patient not to start the disease.

the doctor examines the legs with varicose veins

Lack of therapy and neglected cases can provoke a number of concomitant diseases. Let's list the main ones:

  • eczema;
  • bleeding of varicose veins;
  • thrombophlebitis;
  • difficult to stop venous bleeding;
  • phlebothrombosis;
  • ulcers on the skin at the sites of dislocation of the cones of the veins;
  • trophic ulcers.

Symptoms of varicose veins of the legs

It is one of the most common diseases in the world. The symptoms of varicose veins on the legs appear much earlier than the clinical signs of pathology. In medicine, the main observations of the course of the disease began with the detection of vasodilatation in the legs, where the disease manifests all the symptoms clearly.

Signs of varicose veins include:

  • feeling of heaviness in the legs, not due to physical activity;
  • the appearance of a vascular network, asterisks;
  • nocturnal, and later daytime, cramps of the calf muscles;
  • visual determination of the increase in veins under the skin;
  • edema that does not go away at rest;
  • pigmentation of skin areas where enlarged veins are located;
  • periodic spontaneous hemorrhage;
  • dermatitis;
  • periodic appearance of ulcers and their tightening;
  • trophic non-healing ulcers.

The appearance of the first sign may indicate the onset of varicose veins on the legs. Symptoms develop progressively, and further absence of therapy will bring a significant deterioration in health, and sometimes lead to disability.

Doctors of all types of vein pathology most often diagnose varicose veins of the lower extremities. Symptoms, treatment, and diagnosis and investigation of the disease have come a long history of discovery. Today, pathology is treated with modern methods, which include drug therapy, physiotherapy, exercise therapy, surgical interventions, and so on.

laser treatment of varicose veins

Varicose veins of the small pelvis

Women are much more likely to experience venous disease. The least studied type of pathology is pelvic varicose veins.

Symptoms and Signs:

  • Pain in the lower abdomen during physical or emotional stress.
  • Painful sensations during, or immediately after intercourse.
  • The current diagnosis is infertility, dysmenorrhea.
  • Disorders of the bladder, urination.

The disease is diagnosed by an obstetrician-gynecologist, phlebologist, vascular surgeon. At the first stage, a visual examination and palpation are performed in the area of the thighs, buttocks, and perineum. If, upon examination, veins are noticeable, and when pressed, their increase is felt, the presence of bumps is felt, the patient feels pain, then we can say that these are varicose veins. Symptoms in women, like in men, require confirmation or refutation by diagnostic methods and laboratory tests.

Diagnostic methods:

  1. Laparoscopy.
  2. Ultrasound.
  3. Doppler ultrasonography.
  4. Ovaricography.

With varicose veins in the pelvic area, treatment should be started immediately. The wire is fraught with blood stagnation, the development of pathologies of neighboring organs. The measures of therapy are medications designed to restore the elasticity of the vessel walls, to increase the lumen of the vein. In advanced cases, surgical removal of the damaged vein or its blockage is acceptable. Blood begins to move through adjacent veins.

Inguinal varicose veins

Symptoms of this type of pathology are observed in men over the age of 50, but the disease is increasingly common in younger people. In men of reproductive age, the expansion of the spermatic cord becomes the cause of infertility.

Symptoms of pathology are:

  • Pain in the groin during exercise.
  • Drawing pains in the scrotum.
  • Detection of veins by visual inspection.

The cause of the disease can be:

  • Heredity, congenital pathology.
  • Heavy physical activity (work, intense training, professional sports).
  • Hernia in the groin area.
  • Neoplasm in the abdominal cavity.
  • Constipation.

Therapy is prescribed depending on the stage of the disease and includes drug treatment with the use of coagulants, non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, or surgery.

hiking as a prevention of varicose veins

Other types of varicose veins

Of all types of the disease, varicose veins of the lower extremities are relatively quickly diagnosed. Symptoms of the same pathology in other organs are characterized by pulling pains and require careful diagnosis:

  • Varicose veins of the upper extremities are rare. The risk group includes patients with diagnosed Parks-Weber disease, patients with subclavian or axillary vein thrombosis. It can also occur in people whose work is associated with heavy physical exertion.
  • Varicose veins of the uterus is a difficultly defined disease, since the symptoms are similar to gynecological pathologies - pulling pains in the lower abdomen, lower back, dysfunction of the uterus, appendages, and so on. The cause of the appearance of varicose veins can be pregnancy, heavy physical activity, heredity, and some diseases. Treatment consists in taking medications, physiotherapy, a healthy lifestyle, in extreme cases, surgery is indicated.
  • Varicose veins of the esophagus and stomach. The disease is provoked by changes in the portal vein, abnormal development of the vascular network. If untreated, bleeding occurs, a burning sensation in the chest area, and rupture of veins may occur. Diagnostics is carried out by methods of fluoroscopy, gastroscopy.
  • Varicose veins of the lip are a cosmetic defect that does not pose a threat to health. It occurs as a result of injury, soft tissue injury. It manifests itself in the form of a vascular network, removed through plastic surgery.

Drug treatment

Treatment should be started as soon as varicose veins have been detected. Symptoms, confirmed by professional diagnostics, determination of the stage of the disease, will help the specialist to prescribe a course of therapy. If the pathology is at the very beginning of its development, then there are enough medications designed to relieve pain, increase the elasticity of blood vessels, and thin the blood in order to prevent the appearance of blood clots.

treatment of varicose veins with cream

The arsenal of treatment methods includes products for external use, such as ointments and gels. Patients are shown wearing compression underwear and constant medication. Of no less importance in therapy is a change in lifestyle, nutrition, and rejection of bad habits. Experts strongly recommend not to self-medicate, but to go to clinics for a diagnosis.

Procedural treatment

Many are afraid of varicose veins. Symptoms make life difficult, and without proper treatment, the disease can lead to disability. Seeking therapy on time is to avoid additional stress on the body through the use of gentle treatment methods.

The arsenal of medicine includes the following treatment methods:

  • One of the most effective ways to combat the disease is hirudotherapy. The bite of a leech injects into the human blood a substance called hirudin, which reduces blood viscosity without the use of artificially synthesized drugs. Hirudotherapy is the prevention of thrombosis.
  • Endovasal laser coagulation. It is carried out under local anesthesia and destroys spider veins at the initial stage.
  • Ozone therapy works well for varicose veins. Symptoms and treatment of the initial stages of the disease are determined to a greater extent by cosmetic defects - the vascular network or asterisks on the body. To eliminate the phenomenon, ozone is injected into the lumen of the vessel, gluing the walls, the blood supply is redirected through healthy veins and blood vessels. Sometimes several sessions are required.
  • Sclerotherapy is used when there is a slight severity of venous nodes showing symptoms of varicose veins. The photo of the procedure demonstrates the introduction of certain medications into the affected vein, gluing the walls of blood vessels. Blood moves through healthy vessels.
  • Phlebectomy is a surgical operation in which the affected veins are removed. The intervention is carried out stationary, the next day the patient can go home. Within a month after the operation, the patient was prescribed wearing special tights or bandaging the limb with an elastic bandage.

Movement is life and health

Dosed physical activity has a beneficial effect on varicose veins. Thanks to special sets of exercises, it is possible to avoid stagnation of blood in the veins, increase vascular tone, improve blood circulation and lymph drainage.

Even in severe cases, you should not give up physical activity. The doctor can give recommendations or referrals for therapeutic and prophylactic physical education, where they will select an individual training program (for example, special gymnastics), taking into account the current state of health. Sports activities make a huge contribution to the patient's rehabilitation.

Recommended sports:

  • Water aerobics, swimming.
  • Sports and Nordic walking.
  • Bicycle rides.
  • Golf.
  • A set of yoga therapy exercises.
compression stockings for varicose veins

Prophylaxis

Varicose veins can overtake any person, in urban conditions this is facilitated by physical inactivity, and in rural areas - hard physical labor. Preventive measures help to avoid the disease.

  • For people of standing and sedentary professions - periodic implementation of light physical exercises. Wearing compression garments is also recommended.
  • Wear shoes with medium heels (up to 4 cm), avoid high heels or reduce the amount of time spent in uncomfortable shoes to a minimum.
  • Avoid high temperatures when taking a bath or sauna.
  • Walk, run, swim, bike as much as possible.
  • Give up smoking and alcohol.
  • Get rid of the habit of throwing one leg over the other when sitting.
  • Track your hormonal levels and, if possible, regulate it.
  • Walk without shoes more often - barefoot on the ground, grass.

Observing a healthy lifestyle, you can avoid diseases such as varicose veins. Symptoms and treatment, photos of procedures and their effectiveness, as well as modern methods of prevention could be seen in this article. In case of fear, it is worth seeking advice from a therapist, phlebologist, vascular surgeon.