Varicose veins are enlarged veins that are swollen and raised above the surface of the skin. Veins have leaflet valves to prevent blood from flowing backwards (retrograde). Leg muscles pump the veins to return blood to the heart. Large varicose veins can cause aching and feelings of fatigue as well as skin changes like rashes, redness, and sores. As many as 40 million Americans, most of them women, have varicose veins. Varicose veins affect 1 out of 2 people over age 50. They are more common in women than men. Hemorrhoids are a type of varicose vein. Spider veins are like varicose veins, but they are smaller. Healthy veins typically are visibly distended only at the foot and ankle. Causes include congenitally defective valves, thrombophlebitis, and pregnancy.
Prolonged standing and increased pressure within the abdomen may increase susceptibility to the development of varicose veins or aggravate the condition. Varicose veins of pregnancy most often are caused by hormonal changes that render vein walls and the valves themselves more pliable, but the sudden appearance of new dilated varicosities during pregnancy still warrants a full evaluation because of the possibility that these may be new bypass pathways related to acute DVT. Varicose veins look swollen and stretched all the time. Varicose veins are dark purple or blue in color and may appear twisted and bulging like cord. It is not necessary that any pain in the legs is varicose veins. If one feels any kind of pain in the legs, it is highly recommended to consult the doctor for further assistance.
Varicose veins are often diagnosed based simply on the appearance of the veins. Normally, the diagnosis of varicose veins is based on the appearance of the veins. In the maximum cases, varicose veins are found in legs. Sometimes these lines are barely visible, but sometimes they can be large, and even raised lines that can cause some people to become self-conscious. Physician will observe the veins in both the conditions. If the varicose veins condition is positive, the blood starts to block in the veins immediately on standing still for long. Doctor may also ask one about the conditions like pain and any other symptoms that one find unusual. In very rare cases, the doctor may order one to undergo an angiogram test, in order to check the flow of blood through the blood vessels.
There are no major symptoms of varicose veins other than the obvious veins showing through your skin, but the varicose veins diagnosis can sometimes be a symptom of other circulatory system problems. Varicose veins do not usually present a threat to your overall health, and most people are not referred to a specialist. Treatment programs are tailored to each individual and will depend on various factors. Treatment options include sclerotherapy (microsclerotherapy), laser surgery, minimally invasive catheter-assisted procedures, surgical vein stripping, ambulatory phlebectomy and endoscopic vein surgery. Patients may receive a combination of treatments, and most patients participate in some self-care therapies as well.