Varicose veins in the legs - the number one problem for a modern person. The disease hides not only cosmetic defects, but also terrible complications that can be irreversible without effective therapy.
Varicose veins of the lower extremities have specific symptoms and treatment that everyone needs to know. Treatment can be done at home or in a hospital, and therapy can be conservative or operative, depending on the degree of vascular damage.
The main thing in this pathology is to diagnose varicose veins in the early stages. This ensures the patient's safety and allows treatment to be adjusted as needed.
Causes of the disease
Varicose veins occur when there is a defect in the venous valve apparatus. Unlike arteries, arteries do not have the ability to contract and contract. If there is a congenital or acquired defect in the valves of the arteries, the blood stagnates in them and reverse blood flow occurs. This causes an increase in the pressure in the arteries of the limbs, which in turn causes them to dilate.
Causes of varicose veins:
- long-term static position of the body causing blood stasis in the arteries of the lower extremities;
- Heredity.There is a congenital anomaly of the valves that can occur in both women and men. This pathology of an inherited nature manifests itself at a young age and can occur even in children;
- Hormonal diseases and endocrinological diseases.In adolescents, hormonal fluctuations, the onset of menstruation, pregnancy, childbirth, lactation, menopause - all these fluctuations in the hormonal background in the presence of predisposing factors to varicose veins can lead to the development of the disease. Pathological women are affected several times more than men.
There are factors that can lead to the development of varicose veins:
- sex - women are more prone to varicose veins than men;
- physical - varicose veins of the lower extremities are more common in overweight people;
- race - the disease often affects the open-skinned race;
- chronic inflammatory foci in the body and small pelvis, which leads to vascular inflammation and dysfunction;
- physical activity that causes blood stasis in the arteries, static work;
- diseases of the nervous system. The development of varicose veins of the lower extremities is associated with impaired innervation and changes in vascular tone in pathology of the nervous system.
Symptoms of varicose veins of the lower extremities
Varicose veins of the lower extremities have different symptoms. Depending on the severity of the disease, CEAP (Clinical Etiology Anatomy Pathology) or the international scientific community classifies varicose veins into 6 degrees.
This stage of the disease is characterized by the following:
- feelings of heaviness in the lower extremities;
- swelling of the legs;
- painful sensations in the legs;
- Seizures that occur at night.
Not all symptoms in stage 0 are visible: the veins appear normal and examination methods do not detect varicose veins.
Appearance is added to the attributes:
- spider veins;
- vascular network in the limbs.
Added to the described symptoms:
- visible dilation of superficial vessels in the lower extremities;
- varicose veins.
Blood clots can form at this stage if there is no adequate treatment.
Stage 4 - 3.Regular swelling of the legs is combined.
Stage 5 - 4.
Disorders of tissue trophism occur and are accompanied by:
- atrophy of the skin;
- skin maceration;
- Appearance of pigmented areas on the skin of the legs.
Stages 6 - 5.History of a healing trophic ulcer.
Stages 7 - 6.It is characterized by the presence of non-healing trophic ulcers.
Diagnosis of varicose veins of the lower extremities
Diagnosis of varicose veins of the lower extremities Varicose veins of the legs can be diagnosed:
- functional tests;
- Doppler ultrasound methods: color duplex or triplex scanning;
- Contrast phlebography with the introduction of a contrast agent into the veins, followed by X-rays.
The gold standard for the diagnosis of varicose veins is currently Doppler ultrasound. This research method allows to determine the development of the disease in the early stages and monitor the effectiveness of therapy. Ultrasound has no contraindications and is also allowed during pregnancy.
Varicose veins in the legs: treatment at home and in the hospital
Therapy for varicose veins of the lower extremities can be as follows:
Varicose veins in the legs, home treatment allows in cases where the disease is compatible with conservative therapy.
In case of complications, trophic disorders or other dangerous symptoms, inpatient treatment of varicose veins of the lower extremities is recommended. You must also be in the hospital during surgery and rehabilitation.
Conservative treatment does not eliminate the cause of varicose veins. It is used as:
- comprehensive treatment method;
- preparation for surgery; as a prophylaxis in the postoperative period
- ; If there is a contraindication to surgical treatment
The purpose of conservative treatment:
- prevention of recurrence of the disease;
- Eliminate the symptoms of varicose veins.
There are conservative methods for the treatment of varicose veins:
- compression therapy;
- drug treatment;
- Traditional treatments.
Compression underwear can achieve the following results due to the pressure applied to the lower limbs:
- to reduce density in the lower extremities; to increase lymphatic drainage
- Improve the function of deep veins.
Compression stockings are selected by the attending physician and given according to prescriptions. The exception is linen to prevent varicose veins. Depending on the degree of pressure applied to the lower extremities and the severity of varicose veins, the phlebologist selects the appropriate form. The use of flax depends on the degree of vascular damage.
used compression underwear:
- elastic bandages;
- knee heights;
Medications that have the following effects are the most effective:
- increases the tone of the vascular wall;
- reduce capillary network permeability and improve lymphatic drainage;
- normalizes blood rheological properties;
- stop inflammation in affected veins;
- has the maximum effect at the lowest dose;
- does not react negatively.
The main drugs used in the treatment of varicose veins are:
- phlebotonic drugs;
- venotonic drugs;
- fibrinolytic therapy;
- antioxidant therapy.
Traditional therapies are based on the following:
- horse chestnut extract;
- grape leaf extract.
Surgery for varicose veins
If indicated, surgery for varicose veins of the lower extremities is performed. Surgical treatment is radical, able to eliminate not only the symptoms of the disease, but also the cause.
Surgical interventions include:
- laser therapy;
- radio frequency destruction.
Sclerotherapy involves the insertion of special sclerosants into the affected arteries of the lower extremities that close the arteries and prevent venous blood from moving along them.
Phlebectomy is a radical surgery of varicose veins performed under anesthesia and accompanied by removal of the affected vessels through incisions in the lower extremities.
Laser treatment of varicose veins is the cutting and sticking of the affected veins with the help of a laser device. Treatment does not require anesthesia and surgical procedures.
Radiofrequency obliteration allows you to eliminate reflux in saphenous veins using a radiofrequency device. The procedure is performed under local anesthesia without surgery under ultrasound supervision.
Lower limb massage
Massage for varicose veins in the legs is a preventive treatment. It is used in the early stages and in the postoperative period to relieve symptoms.
Application of massage:possible with
- absence of trophic diseases in the lower extremities;
- absence of trophic ulcers;
- presence of mild lesions.
Massage allows you to relax the microvasculature and improve lymphatic drainage. The massage begins at the thighs and descends to the thighs, legs and feet. Apply stroking with the capture of the affected areas, as well as light shaking, tingling. During the massage, the patient is lying down with his legs bent and raised.
You can read all the benefits of massage and how to do it and watch the video on this page.
Among the contraindications to massage are:
- decompensated concomitant diseases;
- cardiovascular diseases;
- grade 3 arterial hypertension;
- trophic disorders in the lower extremities;
You should consult a qualified professional before starting a massage or taking medication. Self-medication for varicose veins is unacceptable, as it can lead to irreversible consequences.