Varicose veins - prevention

Apr 7, 2012 , Kateřina Hudecová

krecove-zily-prevence.jpg - kopie
krecove-zily-prevence.jpg - kopie
Varicose veins are a venous disease of the lower extremities, where the venous wall swells and venous valves malfunction. Preventive measures can prevent or mitigate the effects of varicose veins.

Varicose veins - prevention

Varicose veins are one of the diseases of the venous system, which are manifested in almost half of our population. They appear mostly on the legs, where they can be seen as emerging sinuous veins. They are caused by excessive swelling of the venous walls and subsequent accumulation of blood that can not flow out of the limb. It affects women approximately twice as often as men.

Causes of varicose veins

Varicose veins are caused by swelling of the venous wall. This occurs due to the weakening of the venous walls, or after suffering deep vein thrombosis. Swelling of the venous wall is associated with valve malfunction, which are abundant in the veins of the lower extremities. They do not contract properly and are unable to prevent backflow of blood.

Symptoms of varicose veins

Varicose veins are sinuous emerging veins on the surface of the lower extremities. Initially they pose only cosmetic problems and no major manifestations appear. Later, patients suffer from leg pain, swelling, and a feeling of heavy legs. These symptoms occur mainly in the evening. Women have these difficulties accentuated before menstruation.

Risk factors of varicose veins

It is known that the formation of varicose veins is greatly influenced by genetics. This means that from birth, some people have an innate weakness of the venous walls, which are not capable enough to withstand the pressure of the blood, they lose elasticity and swell. This congenital defect of the venous wall can not be influenced. Therefore, it is advisable to try to at least reduce the risk of developing varicose veins. Another risk factor is prolonged standing. This leads to increased accumulation of blood in the lower extremities and thus increased pressure on the venous wall. It loses its strength and swells. Also anticipated is the effect of female sex hormones on the venous wall, as well as pregnancy, obesity, and smoking.

Prevention of varicose veins

Varicose veins are a disease that develops over many years, but it is essential to not neglect this condition. Like any other disease, varicose veins can also have complications like venous inflammation, chronic venous insufficiency and varicose ulcers. Therefore, it is appropriate to prevent this disease. Prevention of varicose veins consists in avoiding the risk factors.

  • Exercise is the most important factor in the prevention of varicose veins. Physical activity stimulates the proper function of the venous system. Likewise, movement is the most effective method how to avoid varicose veins during pregnancy.
  • Another risk factor for developing varicose veins is obesity. Obese people or people with overweight need to lose weight and maintain at least some physical activity. Suitable is walking, dancing, cycling or swimming, while excessive exercise may be harmful.
  • An improvement can be achieved by adjusting the diet, it is recommended to increase the intake of fiber and vitamin C. It is also necessary to have a sufficient fluid intake, avoid excessive salting, alcohol and smoking.
  • For the prevention of varicose veins vascular gymnastics is recommended. It is an alternate showering of the legs with hot and cold water, which improves the blood circulation of the lower extremities. It is advisable to avoid warm environment, saunas and also hot baths.
  • It is also not advisable to wear tight shoes or pants that impair blood circulation. Also high heel shoes promote varicose veins.
  • Patients with a genetic predisposition for varicose veins should wear special compression stockings that improve blood flow in the veins, thereby alleviating the congestion as well as reduce pain.
  • It is essential to avoid prolonged periods of standing, as this blood must overcome gravity. If the venous wall is not sufficient, it swells and varicose veins are formed. It is therefore recommended to daily lift legs upwards above the level of the heart and hold them in this position for at least 10-15 minutes.

Treatment of varicose veins

As with other diseases, early treatment of varicose veins is essential. Only this can delay the progression of the disease or prevent any serious complications, such as the formation of varicose ulcers or blood clots. If we observe incipient difficulties, we should consult a doctor as soon as possible. Only a doctor can determine the extent of the disease and on that basis suggest an appropriate treatment. We can choose between conservative treatment, surgery, sclerotherapy or laser therapy.

  • Conservative treatment consists of regime measures and the use of vasoprotectives, i.e. drugs that stimulate the strength of the venous wall.
  • Surgical treatment consists of removing the damaged part of the veins and is performed under general or local anesthesia.
  • Sclerotherapy is a method chosen in the case of smaller vein defects. It consists of the injection of substances that solidify and cause clogging of the venous wall due to wearing elastic compression stockings.
  • Laser treatment for varicose veins is the introduction of a laser fiber into the affected vein, causing damage and sealing of the vein from the inside. However, this method is not covered by insurance, so it must be paid by the patient himself.

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