What are Varicose Veins?
Varicose veins generally appear as blue, somewhat bulging “cords” that run close to the surface of your skin. Most commonly, they appear on the feet and legs. There are two main types of varicose veins: superficial and deep. Superficial varicose veins are easily visible, right beneath the surface of the skin, and are often surrounded by spider veins. Deep varicose veins are relatively rare, but can be dangerous. They occur on the interior of your body, generally not visible to the naked eye, and can lead to serious blood clots.
Typically, a medical professional will examine you to provide a clear diagnosis.
What are the Symptoms of Varicose Veins?
For patients with varicose veins, symptoms may vary somewhat from case to case. When varicose veins are inflamed, the skin area may be tender or painful to the touch. They can also present an obstacle to healthy circulation, leading to swollen ankles, itchiness, and aching.
Deep varicose veins can also cause aching and swelling, but can also be the starting point for dangerous blood clots, an invisible symptom.
What Causes Varicose Veins?
Veins contain a valve that regulates blood flow, opening to allow it to move forward and then closing to prevent movement in the wrong direction. However, varicose veins have valves that do not work correctly, allowing the blood to pool, leading to increased pressure that causes twisting and bulging.
Varicose veins are a fairly common condition, affecting close to 1 in 4 people in Illinois and the rest of the United States. One main cause is simply genetics, with many people finding it to be a family condition. Women are twice as likely as men to develop varicose veins, especially due to pregnancy. Other causes include age, obesity, a sedentary lifestyle, or any condition that leads to excessive pressure on the legs or abdomen.
For those looking for information about how to prevent varicose veins, one simple way is to maintain a healthy weight and active lifestyle.
What are the Options for Varicose Vein Treatment?
Patients wanting to know how to get rid of varicose veins should be pleased to hear that there are excellent options available. One option is EVLA, which involves a specialized laser treatment to shut down a vein that has become varicose. It is simple and painless, with little to no complications. Another possible treatment is sclerotherapy, which is a quick injection of a sclerosing agent to treat small spider veins.
To learn more about treatment options for your personal case, contact Northern Illinois Vein Clinic and schedule a consultation. We are well-known in Northern Illinois for providing excellent, minimally invasive treatment options for those looking for treatment for varicose veins.