Varices or varicose veins are enlarged veins flesh colored, dark purple or blue. This widening of the normal size of the veins especially occurs in the legs.
Varicose veins are swollen veins plenty of blood because of a malfunction of the vein valves . They do not work properly to make the venous blood flow back to the heart, so blood remains in a superior volume in the affected vein.
Varicose veins usually affect to the veins of the leg but they can appear in any part of the body, such as varicose veins of the annus (hemorrhoids) or those affecting the testicles (varicocele) It is a very extended problem which affects more women than men.
Consequences of varices
If not properly treated, varices usually get worse in time, leading to possible complications, such as chronic inflammation of the veins (phlebitis) or leg ulcers that can infect or break. The later is very dangerous since it can produce a great blood lost. Varicose veins that appear around the ankles are more likely to break
Varicose veins are a very extended problem within the adult population. It is estimated that it affects 40 or 50 % of people aged 50 or older. Some people think that they are only an aesthetical problem but having varices is a real disease which deserves to be treated properly.
From other point of view, varicose veins affect to almost 1 % of labor force. It supposes an average of 20 days of annually work lost.
What are spider veins?
Spicer veins are a type of little varicose veins that appear nearer to surface of the skin. They are red or blue and they are smaller than varicose veins.
Similar to spider webs or tree branches, they generally appear on the legs and face, extending along a small or big surface of the skin.
Although they are not painful, they constitute a very disturbing problem from an aesthetical point of view. .
Types of varices
There are two types of varicose veins:
- Primary varicose veins: Those that appear because the patients suffer from congenial malfunctioning of veins valves. Sometimes primary varices do not have a well defined reason.
- Secondary varicose veins: They develop in time as a result of bad habits or as a consequence of certain situations, such as pregnancy.
- Poor circulation in general and specially some circulatory diseases as thrombophlebitis ( an inflammation of the vein cause by its obstruction, generally produced by a blood clot) and malfunction of the valves of the veins.
- Hormonal changes: Certain periods of the women's life are responsible for an increase in varicose veins. such as during pregnancy (over 80% of women in their first pregnancy suffer from this ailment) puberty or menopause.
There are some circumstances that can predispose the appearance of varicose veins:
- Inadequate diet: too much fat and protein. Few fruits and vegetables. (Look for more information about varicose veins treatment on the listing above)
- Lack of exercise or abuse of the situations in which the legs are subjected to a permanent stress, such as when someone remains sitting or standing for to long, or when someone generally sits cross-legged.
- Too much body weight: Obesity or too much body weight can predispose to varicose veins, since this conditions exert to much effort to the legs.
- Weightlifting: This physical activity can trigger varicose veins.
- Wearing inadequate clothes: Too close-fitting clothes, such as tight jeans, can provide similar effects.
Diagnosis and treatment of varices
The presence of abnormal swollen veins in the legs or any part of the body requires medical attention to diagnose through the proper procedure what are the real causes of varicose veins .
This should be done in case of pain or aggravation of pain, or in case of prolonged varicose veins that do not improve after some home treatments (Look for more information about " Home remedies for varicose veins" in the listing above) .
Going to the doctor will be compulsory in case of leg ulcers, specially when bleeding, or when experiencing fever, leg swelling because of blood clots or if the affected leg becomes red. A blood clot can be distinguished because they appear like red bumps which do not disappear although we raise the legs for a time.
Apart from a visual diagnosis, Some techniques could be needed such as, for example, an angiography (x-rays to to see inside the arteries) or a duplex ultrasound exam of extremity (which measures blood fluidity and other parameters by means of ultrasounds)
The usual medical treatment of varicose veins is intended to correct the situations that can worse them, such as avoiding standing for to long periods.
Varicose veins produced during pregnancy tend to disappear within three months after delivery.
Compression stockings varicose veins
The use of elastic support hoses
can enhance venous return by applying compression on the legs. Rubber mats with irregular surface have also been proved very useful.
By standing without shoes on a rubber mat, the muscles of the leg are activated, improving blood circulation.
However, rubber mat treatment is not so effective as compression stockings, especially on those cases where varicose veins are produced as a result of long periods of standing or too much weight.
Varicose vein surgery
In critical situations, when too much pain or usual bleeding is involved surgical methods could be needed, such as sclerotherapy of veins (injection of saltwater into the varicose vein to dissolve it) or vein stripping (surgery to remove the varicose veins)
The natural treatment of varicose veins in the legs involves using a series of natural resources that help prevent this disease or reduce its symptoms.