What are varicose veins

blood flow in a healthy varicose vein

Varicose veins are swelling of the peripheral veins under the skin, most often on the surface of the leg muscles, the veins take on the appearance of a swollen and very sinuous bluish color. At the same time, nodes are formed and the valve apparatus is destroyed. The outflow of blood through the veins cannot be done in a standard way. When the valve flaps close, trouble begins. The blood cannot move as it should, rising. The veins are under pressure due to stagnation of the blood.

When it increases, due to this, the blood is expelled and its excess stretches the walls of the veins, which are initially of different thickness. The glasses are stretched. Its edges are pressed against the skin and become visible. Due to this, the characteristic "cobwebs" (vascular networks) are formed. If the vessel is visible through the epidermis layer, it means that it is weakened. The thicker the veins, the more noticeable their blue color. Nodules are created that are clearly visible on the legs.

This disease is well known since ancient times. Archaeologists found the first mention of this topic in the texts of the laws on medicine that were created in the Byzantine state. In the hands of the Egyptian pharaohs there were elastic bandages that help in the prevention of diseases. The medical specialists, Hippocrates, Paracelsus and also Avicenna, tried to discover methods of treatment.

This pathology is very common. One in four inhabitants of the planet suffers from it. Among the main development factors is insufficient development of connective tissue. For the development of varicose veins, predisposing conditions are necessary. This partly explains why there are so many women among the phlebologist's visitors. In your body, the restructuring of hormones is especially active.

It is very important to take timely care of the condition of the veins. They cause a lot of anxiety, starting with the ugly appearance of the legs. This is a great threat to health and even life. When this disease reaches a neglected state, its complications begin. Meanwhile, if you go to the doctors in time, it is not difficult to get rid of the disease. If you start treatment on time, no surgery will be required. This is the best way to make the veins disappear on their own and return to their normal appearance.

According to statistics, 18-20 percent of the population suffers from varicose veins and almost 50% of patients in the initial stage do not even suspect that they are seriously ill. Very often, women suffer from this disease.

Causes of varicose veins

The causes of varicose veins can be prolonged standing, obesity, pregnancy, prolonged use of stockings or socks with tight elastic bands, as well as congenital weakness of the connective tissue. The above refers to the main causes of the development of the disease.

Varicose veins form when blood runs incorrectly through the veins. Scientists have investigated the causes of this disease, which is not inherent in other living species to the extent that humans suffer from it. Among the established reasons:

  1. Walking upright. Researchers attribute the disease to the lower extremities because of the excessive pressure that the body exerts on them. The column of blood continues to the heart muscle. Those who spend a lot of time on their feet are at particular risk.
  2. Genetic predisposition. In most people, this disease turns out to be a factor transmitted by parents. The statistics in this case are very clear: in babies whose parents suffered from such a disease, the probability of having varicose veins increases to 70%. But this risk can be avoided if accompanying factors are not created. Hereditary varicose veins usually appear at a very young age.
  3. The nature of work, the standard way of life. Many modern occupations have some risk of lack of mobility. Phlebologists suggested using the term "computer varicose veins. "
  4. Endocrine and hormonal disorders. Due to the characteristics of the body in women, periods of hormonal disturbances become the causes of blood stagnation. For them, the most dangerous periods are puberty, pregnancy, the time after childbirth. The time when menopause comes is also dangerous. This gender category of patients consults doctors 2-3 times more often. There are not enough hormones in the female organs called estrogens. Instead, the so-called corpus luteum hormone predominates. It is believed that it is he who has a relaxing effect on the muscles. This promotes varicose veins.
  5. Obstacles in the blood flow through the veins. They arise as a purely mechanical formation: a blood clot, uterus, tumor.
  6. Stress and nervous disorders affect the state of the blood vessels. There are nerve endings in the wall of the veins that give them elasticity. With increased pressure in them, exposure to toxins, alcohol, the light from the vessels loses its tone and expands.
  7. Arterio-venous anastomosis. They can form due to pressure in the overflow area of arterial blood cells.
  8. The so-called muscle pump is located in the calf muscles and they must be constantly activated. It is very important to monitor your health, avoiding persistent diseases: coughs and seizures.

The factors that contribute to the development of varicose veins can be overcome by monitoring your health.

Symptoms of varicose veins

In order not to miss the moment of the onset of the disease, you need to know the first symptoms of varicose veins and have time to take the necessary measures.

The main symptoms of varicose veins are:

  1. The appearance of pain in the legs, a sensation of heat, and sometimes a burning sensation in the veins of the legs;
  2. Heaviness in the legs;
  3. At night, swelling appears in the legs;
  4. Leg cramps start at night;
  5. Dilated veins;
  6. The skin on the lower leg acquires a dark color, seals appear, trophic ulcers are possible.

You can also identify the following symptoms of varicose veins:

  1. There are manifestations that cover only the region of the popliteal fossa, as well as the posterior surface of the legs. With thick skin, as well as with excessive hairiness on the legs, less appears.
  2. Easily palpable: affected veins appear twisted on palpation.
  3. If the patient is lying down, raising the legs, the mesh disappears and in the upright position it thickens again.
  4. There is a peculiar heaviness in the legs, dull aches, convulsions. The patient often complains of a burning sensation. The manifestations are especially aggravated at night or after a prolonged period of rest.
  5. The feet can also swell, especially in the soft tissue area. They are also found in the ankles, in the lower areas of the shins.

These are the main symptoms of varicose veins. They get worse if the disease is not treated in time. Trophic changes extend further to the skin of the legs and feet. The epidermis becomes dry, blue in color, swells easily. Due to the progression of varicose veins, the following is observed:

  1. Pigmentation.
  2. Induction (seals).
  3. Trophic ulcers.
  4. Impaired skin nutrition.

If third-party symptoms of varicose veins appear, such as fever or weakness, it means that the disease has passed to the stage of complications. There are quite rare symptoms like bleeding when the nodes rupture. Most of the time they occur at night.

Complications of varicose veins

Varicose vein complications take painful forms. They are easy to recognize by their manifestations:

  1. Acute stage of superficial venous thrombophlebitis.
  2. Trophic ulcer.
  3. Phlebothrombosis.
  4. Bleeding varicose veins.

Acute thrombophlebitis has the following differences:

  • flushing
  • pain
  • Notable seals depending on the location of the subcutaneous vessels.

The resulting blood clots can enter a favorable course of the process, and then, in the context of the treatment that is being carried out, they organize (germinate with connective tissue) and then dissolve. Because of this, the vessel recanalization process begins. The space can also be completely blocked. Because of this, there is a risk of obliteration and hardening of the affected vein.

With the progression of the disease, there are factors that accompany ascending varicothrombophlebitis. Behind him comes lebothrombosis. Covers the deep vein system, pulmonary embolism begins. If you do not want to be treated, occlusion of the vessels of the limb is possible, when the outflow of blood stops and gangrene begins.

Chronic venous insufficiency

Development goes through several stages. Initially, minimal changes in hemodynamics are considered, so horizontally directed veno-venous reflux is formed. At the same time, the valves of the communicating vessels begin to suffer insufficiency and the disease captures the areas of the saphenous veins, extending to the deepest ones.

There are four characteristic stages of chronic venous insufficiency:

  1. Zero, without clear clinical symptoms. Edema is poorly expressed, as is visible ectasia of the superficial veins.
  2. First, characterized by a noticeable varicose veins of the lower extremities. There are no trophic disorders.
  3. The second, with evident growth of veins. Typical nodules are formed, a remarkably stable edematous syndrome, areas of hyperpigmentation, eczema lesions, trophic ulcers. If an ultrasound examination is performed, then it is possible to reveal valvular insufficiency of the vessels of different types of collectors: superficial and deep.
  4. Third, in which the above symptoms are supplemented by a persistent type of trophic disorders, which are not covered by conservative treatment.

Chronic venous insufficiency has its own symptoms:

  • Itch
  • pain,
  • night cramps in the extremities,
  • swelling
  • stagnant soft tissue formations,
  • possibly ulcers.

This pathology is characterized by a certain pain syndrome: it increases when the patient places the lower extremities in a forced-type position, due to the use of elastic compression, walking with a walking step. There is a type of edema that shows that the deep veins are affected.

If only the superficial vessels are affected, it is possible to diagnose transient pastiness of the ankle, based on orthostasis (vertical position). The lower extremities are in a state of discomfort, so chronic venous insufficiency does not allow them to carry out normal life activities. Physical activity is markedly reduced, patients experience tension, emotional disturbances, inappropriate feelings of anxiety.

Decreased performance also leads to certain consequences. Because of them, self-esteem and social activity suffer. Maladjustment occurs in society. It is important to turn to medicine in time, in particular, to a phlebologist.

Superficial vein thrombophlebitis

The essence of the pathology is in the resulting blood clots that block the light in the subcutaneous vessels. At the same time, an aseptic-type inflammation of the venous wall develops. The viscosity of the blood increases, the venous outflow becomes difficult.

The site of the disease is usually the lower third of the thigh, possibly the upper third of the leg. In theory, all parts of the body are susceptible to this disease. The great saphenous vein along with its tributaries (95%) is particularly affected by the disease. Small: represents only 5% of cases.

Experts easily establish the disease, since the clinical manifestations of superficial venous thrombophlebitis are quite striking. The classic symptoms are as follows:

  • hyperemia (redness) over the varicose vein,
  • severe pain
  • general well-being does not change significantly (subfebrile condition, weakness),
  • if you feel the affected vessel, you can determine the compaction of the soft tissues,
  • local hyperthermia.

With the development of pathology, it covers more and more veins. 10% of these cases lead to damage to the nearest vessels. A pulmonary embolism can develop.

Diagnosis of thrombophlebitis of this type is carried out in several stages:

  1. The exact location of the apex of the new thrombus is determined.
  2. The duration and characteristics of the pathological changes are revealed.
  3. Determination of risk of life-threatening complications using ultrasound of blood vessels based on color blood flow mapping.
  4. Determination of thrombosis by visualizing the inferior vena cava and iliac vessels on ultrasound examination.
  5. Untrained patients undergo radiopaque phlebography.
  6. A blood test, which in standard cases indicates moderate leukocytosis, an increase in the erythrocyte sedimentation rate, an increase in the concentration of fibrinogen, and a kind of C-reactive protein.
  7. The coagulogram changes to hypercoagulation.

For the treatment of superficial vein thrombophlebitis, delay is unacceptable. At the first characteristic signs, they immediately turn to specialists. This is a vascular pathology in acute form, it requires hospitalization in a hospital with emergency surgery.

Outpatient treatment is allowed if the pathology has not reached the limits of the lower leg. With conservative treatment, they turn to help:

  • non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs,
  • anticoagulants,
  • angioprotectors,
  • disaggregating.

It is necessary to determine the optimal engine speed, calculate the formula for compression therapy. The operation is required only in certain cases, for example, with an ascending type of thrombophlebitis of the base of the trunk of the saphenous vein, when the apex is above the middle third of the thigh.

Trophic ulcer

It appears as a result of an advanced form of the disease, with decompensation of the venous flow. You have certain symptoms:

  1. The formation of a trophic ulcer is slow.
  2. The permeability of the vascular wall increases, it enters the bloodstream area, where erythrocytes contain hemoglobin degraded with hemosiderin, due to which the dermis acquires an abnormally dark color, hyperpigmentation appears.
  3. The process progresses to the formation of a whitish lacquered seal, which is a pre-ulcer condition.

Due to any injury, the slightest, there is a danger of developing an ulcer.

With prompt treatment, the deformity closes quickly. If there is no possibility of treatment, the ulcer progressively increases, perifocal inflammation develops in the area of soft tissues. There is a risk of secondary infection, with the threat of purulent-septic complications of varying severity.

The treatment of trophic ulcers is preceded by their diagnosis, which is characterized by the absence of difficulties. The disease is eliminated in several stages. First, it is necessary to heal the defect and then the operation is performed.

Therapy is aimed at the peculiarity of the phase of the ulcerative process. During exudation, the wound substance is abundantly separated. This indicates an inflammatory reaction of the surrounding soft tissues, concomitant bacterial contamination. The patient must adhere to bed rest for 14 days. There is also a course of broad-spectrum antibacterial drugs, non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs.

It is necessary to take care of cleaning the wound surface. If granulation tissue forms, the severity of the perifocal inflammation decreases, then this is a signal for the next phase of repair.

A course of activities is assigned, the task of which is to activate growth with the maturation of connective tissue elements. This will be aided by polyvalent venotonic procedures, antioxidants, deproteinized derivatives of veal globules. You also need to undergo laser and ultraviolet blood irradiation. This will improve your rheology. Apply an elastic compress.

During epithelialization, it is necessary to protect the maturing scar. It must not be exposed to external mechanical damage. This is facilitated with medical compression stockings or an elastic bandage procedure for sore lower extremities. The course of the phlebotonic continues. When the defect is completely closed with new tissue, in the absence of contraindications, the combined surgery stage begins.

Pulmonary embolism

It is an acute blockage of the pulmonary trunk, as well as of the branches of the arterial system, which is represented by a pulmonary circulation by a thrombus. It is created in the great venous circulation, as well as in the right heart. The essence of thromboembolism is the blockage of the arterial bed by a thrombus. In the standard version, a thrombus migrates to the pulmonary artery with its branches from the deep vein system affected by diseases in certain pathologies.

A disease like pulmonary embolism is a common cause of sudden death.

You can list the risk factors for which the disease appears:

  1. Types of oncological diseases.
  2. Surgical interventions performed.
  3. Heart failure attacks
  4. Thrombophilia
  5. Unnecessarily long bed rest.

These conditions often cause thrombosis of the veins in the lower extremities (legs). The consequence can be a thromboembolism. Especially often female patients are exposed to diseases. In this category, the normal process of blood circulation is more disturbed, as well as homeostasis. This disease also occurs in children. Often as a result of complications from umbilical sepsis or as a consequence of cauterization of the veins of the subclavian and umbilical varieties. The symptoms of pulmonary embolism are as follows:

  • Chest pain.
  • Temperature rise
  • Attack collapse.
  • Tachycardia.
  • Hemoptysis.
  • Cyanosis.
  • Cough.
  • Wheezing wheezing
  • Dyspnoea

There are manifestations that depend on the individual symptoms. So we can say about the following syndromes:

  1. Cardiac syndrome(at the same time, there are chest pains, tachycardia, fainting, swelling of the cervical veins, increased cardiac impulse, the venous pulse becomes positive, especially against the background of a massive pulmonary embolism).
  2. Lung pleural(along with chest pains, shortness of breath, cough with sputum, exacerbated by a small submassive embolism, a blockage of the branched peripheral artery of the pulmonary region may be observed).
  3. Brain syndrome, typical of the elderly (loss of consciousness, hypoxic attacks, convulsions, hemiplegia are characteristic).

It is very difficult to diagnose this disease on your own. And the treatment itself should be carried out only by an experienced specialist. It is being built in an integrated way.

The basis is the degree of severity, the duration of the disease. Conservative therapy can be used, which is combined with surgical treatment. Conservative therapy is based on the intake of anticoagulants, thrombolytics, and antiplatelet agents, which help restore patency in the vessel, normalize hemostasis, and stop the destruction of thrombotic cells. Ultimately, identified manifestations of complications are treated.

Pulmonary embolectomy is used surgically. The procedure is performed by specialists from specialized cardiovascular centers. If systemic hypotension is detected, the pressure of the right ventricle of the heart increases; surgery is required immediately. This type of interference is very serious. It is best to prevent this type of venous insufficiency complication.

Risk factors for the development of varicose veins

Now let's talk about the risk factors for varicose veins. Varicose veins can occur due to:

  • hereditary predisposition;
  • hormonal effects, particularly pregnancy;
  • weight gain, obesity;
  • lifestyle, work associated with strenuous physical exertion, prolonged standing or high ambient temperatures

Take care of your feet carefully! Most people, noticing rapid leg fatigue, heaviness in the legs, associate this with anything, but not with the appearance of a serious disease - varicose veins. And if, however, you unite all the seemingly minor leg problems, such as leg swelling, rapid leg fatigue, burning and heat in the veins, bluish translucent crowns, hardly noticeable at first, then here are the first signs of varicose veins. It is necessary to carry out prophylaxis for the treatment of varicose veins in order to avoid major problems with this ailment in the future.

Take care of your feet, and they will love you!

Varicose vein prevention

The prevention of varicose veins is a system of methods. As a result, the onset and development of the disease can be prevented. It's based on:

  1. Optimal construction of work and rest modes, which allows the best to reduce orthostatic loads, which is especially important in case of congenital predisposition.
  2. Selection of different body positions if you have to sit a lot.
  3. Abandon the leg-to-leg position.
  4. Rejection of all things, because the lower extremities, groin area, waist, of tight elastic band stockings are tightly squeezed.
  5. Long walks in comfortable shoes, not tight, without heels and stilettos, which are only allowed on holidays, provided they are worn for the shortest duration.
  6. Avoid constipation, which chronically increases the level of blood pressure in the small pelvis.

The following are allowed:

  1. Cycling (improves the work of the cardiovascular system).
  2. Swimming.
  3. Location for the rest of the legs on a certain hill (at the level of 15-20 cm above the heart).
  4. Constant morning or evening exercises.
  5. Hirudotherapy.
  6. Optimal weight normalization.
  7. Healthy food menu.
  8. Quit bad habits, smoke.
  9. Contrast shower procedures.
  10. From 1. 5 liters of water a day.
  11. A special set of exercises to promote effective blood flow.
  12. Prescription drugs or herbal remedies to increase the tone of the vein wall.

These are simple steps. Its use is recommended in most cases when no acute contraindications have been identified.

The prevention of varicose veins is very important, especially in modern society. With the initial signs of varicose veins, it is possible, thanks to adherence to fairly simple rules, to slow down the development of the disease, as well as to prevent its further progression. To prevent varicose veins, try to avoid hot baths, saunas and do not stay in the sun for long. All of the above helps reduce venous tone, which contributes to blood congestion in the legs.

Also, for the prevention of varicose veins, in no case do not wear tight things, such as socks and stockings with tight elastic bands, as such clothing strongly compresses the veins, which may not have a positive effect on the health of the legs in the future. Also, you should not wear high heels, the heel should not exceed four cm. Sports such as tennis, weight lifting, bodybuilding are not recommended as these sports increase venous pressure in the legs. You should not sit cross-legged, as placing one knee over the other creates a kind of obstacle to normal blood flow in the legs.

Helpful tips. If after a long day of work or just at the end of the day you feel heaviness in your legs, during rest or sleep, try to keep your legs higher than your body position, as if you are in an elevated state.

If at work you have to sit a lot or, on the contrary, stand a lot, then try to change the position of your legs as often as possible, of course. if you are standing, move from one foot to the other, walk in place, if you are sitting, rotate with your feet. Also, doctors advise rinsing your feet with cold water after showering.

With varicose veins, there are several sports that have a positive effect on the extremities: swimming, walking, skiing, and cycling.