Varicose Veins: Symptoms and Treatments

For the most part, varicose veins are esentially harmless. They do not cause other symptoms to develop even when they are fully visible. Their appearance however may lead people to believe that there is something serious developing with the body. For the most part, the sight of varicose veins is a purely cosmetic consideration. Their appearance can have psychological implications, lowering self-esteem and this in turn, can drastically affect a person’s confidence and social mobility, which is why people often see leg vein treatments.

Nonetheless, there are occasions when varicose veins can lead to varying degrees of discomfort, including aching and/or itching. People that experience discomfort with varicose veins usually find that their symptoms are most apparent during the evening, often following a day in which there has been a lot of standing. However these symptoms can be alleviated by lying prostrate and allowing the legs to rest and recover. Women can also achieve relief from discomfort by wearing stockings, that provide leg support.

In very few instances, varicose veins can lead to additional complications that can develop into serious conditions. One instance of this is swelling of the leg. Most commonly, this symptom is restricted to only one leg and requires the varicose vein to become quite large at first before swelling occurs. It is highly recommended that, even if varicose veins have developed in your legs, you should seek advice from a doctor as swelling may not be related to the veins themselves, and may be an indication of other conditions.

Varicose veins can also cause inflammation of the veins, commonly known as phlebitis. This is one of the more serious issues that can arise from varicose veins where they become visibly red and painful to touch. Phlebitis is differentiated from the more serious deep-vein thrombosis – or DVT which is another form of inflammation.

DVT occurs when deep veins in the thighs or the calves, become inflamed and cause blood clots to form. Unless treated the clots formed can cause major problems if they travel up to other parts of the body like lungs or the heart. However, though it is possible for varicose veins to become inflamed and develop into deeper vein inflammation. The links between the two are tentative. Nevertheless DVT can develop in people with varicose veins for a number of different reasons.

Another severe case in which varicose veins develop into something more serious is in regards to changes in the skin – that is, varicose veins can lead to skin conditions like dermatitis and skin ulcers. This can occur when blood spills out from the veins into the surrounding tissues of the leg causing visible discolouration around the skin; and the aforementioned conditions to develop.

People who develop varicose veins can sometimes find that they have both varicose and spider veins on their body – unlike varicose veins which are primarily found in the legs, spider veins can develop on the face or chest. However the development of one has no bearing on the other. Unlike varicose veins, where treatment should be a consideration for health reasons, spider veins are largely a cosmetic consideration for most people.

Treating Varicose Veins

The majority of people who develop varicose veins won’t require treatment. However, it is important that anyone who develops varicose veins consults a professional to rule out future complications. At Melbourne Leg Vein Centre we can help you diagnose whether your varicose veins will lead to further complications.

A large percentage of people who do develop varicose veins rarely ever see a professional to discuss the vein issue. Acknowledging that they are mostly harmless, many people ignore them and figure that they are a cosmetic nuisance that they don’t really need to worry about – a common belief amongst men in particular. This is backed by statistics which show that men only account for 12% of total leg vein treatments.

Non Surgical treatments

Females who decide not to have surgery or laser vein treatments can use support stockings, which can alleviate some of the discomforts associated with varicose veins, such as aches, itches and swelling. Inflammation, or phlebitis, can be treated by anti-inflammation medication such as aspirin.

If none of the non-surgical treatments help with the symptoms surgery is often the next option available to people. The success rates of varicose vein surgery have increased in recent times, allowing for procedures which are not only less likely to lead to complications, but require less downtime for full recovery.

Despite a number of procedures which are available to remove varicose veins, there is a propensity for the veins to regrow over time. This may result in an enlargement of the affected vein, or it may produce entirely new varicose veins in other areas of the legs. For people suffering with the discomforts of varicose veins, it is a condition that may require ongoing long-term treatment to effectively manage the symptoms and appearance of the veins.

If you are confident that leg vein treatments or other surgeries outlined above can help you manage and remove your leg veins, feel free to speak to one of our experienced specialists at a Melbourne Leg Vein Centre for further consultation and advice.

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