Varicose veins are a common disease characterized by an increase in the lumen of blood vessels, a malfunction of the valve system, and the occurrence of reverse blood flow. The pathological process can be located in different places, so there are several types of diseases:
- expansion of the esophageal veins;
- rectal veins (hemorrhoids);
- small pelvis veins;
- spermatic cord veins (varicocele);
- veins of the lower extremities.
Varicose veins in the legs are considered the most common. By some estimates, more than 30% of the population suffers from the disease, the majority being women. Varicose veins in the legs are not just ugly, protruding veins, but also many unpleasant and inconvenient sensations. The pathological process is accompanied by severity, pain, edema and often leads to dangerous complications: thrombophlebitis, thrombosis, trophic ulcers. Many would like to know how to get rid of varicose veins forever, as this greatly impairs their quality of life. But, unfortunately, this phenomenon is irreversible, and the only thing we can achieve is to stop or delay the development of the disease.
The causes of varicose veins are not clearly understood. It is understood that the disease is associated with thinning, weakness and loss of elasticity of the vascular wall, in addition to valve incompetence. As a result, the veins become unevenly dilated, elongated, long, convoluted, and nodular. It is believed that genetic predisposition plays a decisive role in the onset of the disease, that is, from birth onwards, weak vessels and defective valves.
There are several factors that contribute to the development of varicose veins, although they are not the causes:
- Heredity (according to experts, the risk of the disease in people whose parents suffer is up to 70%).
- Belonging to the female. This is due to hormonal changes during puberty, during pregnancy and during menopause, in addition to using hormonal contraceptives and wearing high-heeled shoes.
- Work activity associated with a long stay with the legs or in a sitting position (hairdresser, salesperson, surgeon, waiter, driver, accountant, programmer and others).
- Old age, in which the weakening of blood vessel walls and wear of the valve apparatus is a natural phenomenon.
- Operational interventions.
- Sedentary lifestyle.
- Increased intra-abdominal pressure due to overweight, pregnancy, weight lifting (carriers, weight lifters), frequent exertion with chronic constipation and coughing.
Varicose veins are a chronic process that starts gradually and only progresses over time. So far, it is impossible to completely defeat the disease, but it is possible to delay the development and reduce the symptoms if a complex treatment is applied, which includes:
- lifestyle change;
- physiotherapy exercises;
- compression therapy;
- medicines (for internal use and local administration);
- surgical intervention;
- thermal procedures;
- popular methods.
You will have to fight varicose veins for life. Self-medication should not be done. You will need to be examined by a phlebologist or vascular surgeon, who will make the diagnosis, determine the stage of the disease and the severity of the injury, and prescribe the appropriate treatment. The main task is to remove or reduce clinical manifestations, stop progression, prevent relapses and the development of complications.
The effectiveness of the treatment will depend on the patient's adherence to all the doctor's recommendations. It is important to seek help from the beginning, when there is still no pain, but swelling at night, heaviness and tiredness in the legs, small veins in the skin have already appeared.
Without changing your lifestyle, it is impossible to effectively deal with varicose veins. The rules to be followed are completely banal and non-compliance with them is usually associated with a lack of willpower or an irresponsible attitude towards health.
- Maintain normal body weight.
- Breaking bad habits: alcohol and smoking.
- Refusal of sunbathing, visits to Turkish baths and saunas, to hot baths (including foot baths).
- Refusal of high heels (no more than 4-5 cm).
- Wearing special elastic mesh.
- Provision of physical activity. This can be walking, swimming, physical therapy exercises, some sports. The main one is to exclude squats, weight lifting, long-distance running, jumping, martial arts.
- Proper nutrition. Diet should contain more fresh vegetables, fruits, herbs, whole grains, seafood. It is recommended to reduce the amount of meat. It is necessary to abandon the smoked, the fried, the salty, the greasy. In drinks, give preference to green tea, clean water, natural juices and coffee limit.
- Use every opportunity during the day to lift your legs to an angle of about 20 degrees.
- Buy a special pillow for your legs so that they are above heart level during sleep.
- Try to rinse your feet with cold water as often as possible.
Special stretch jersey is available today in a wide variety. They are shin guards, socks, tights of different colors and densities, which practically do not differ from normal ones. They have become a good alternative to elastic bandages, which are inconvenient to use and apparently unaesthetic.
The special jacket cannot treat varicose veins, but it improves microcirculation, reduces stress on the veins, prevents blood stagnation, reduces the diameter of blood vessels, and increases the flow of venous blood and lymph. The person feels lightness in the legs, at night they are less tired, there is no swelling.
At first, without the habit of putting on compression socks by hand, it will be difficult. To make things easier for you, you can buy a special device.
There are four classes of medical mesh, depending on the pressure applied. You can only use 1st class compression products, which are considered prophylactic and are intended for healthy people. The remainder must be prescribed by the doctor, depending on the diagnosis and severity of the varicose veins. You should be aware that compression products may be contraindicated for certain ailments. Pantyhose or socks are selected by the doctor strictly according to size, otherwise the desired effect will not be.
For the treatment of varicose veins, tablets and external agents are used in the form of gels, creams and ointments with different spectrums of action. They increase vascular tone, improve microcirculation, promote blood flow and prevent skin changes. The medications are designed to relieve fatigue, heaviness, discomfort, swelling, itching, cramps and leg pain. They are strictly assigned individually.
The main means of treating varicose veins are venotonics. They are made from horse chestnut, rutin, grape leaves and are almost always well tolerated by patients. Available in the form of tablets, capsules, gels.
It is necessary to apply a gel or cream on the legs with varicose veins daily and rub in with light movements.
Anticoagulants are used to reduce blood viscosity and reduce the likelihood of thrombophlebitis. They are heparin-based ointments with refreshing additives in the form of menthol, camphor, eucalyptus. In addition to thinning the blood, they prevent the development of thrombophlebitis.
For itchy skin changes, antihistamines may be prescribed. For inflammation, nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory tablets are prescribed.
To get rid of varicose veins, operations are performed to remove the affected part of the vessel in order to stop the discharge of blood from the superficial to the deep vein. The operation is called a phlebectomy. In its classic form, it is less and less used today in connection with the emergence of new, less traumatic ways of dealing with varicose veins. This treatment, as a rule, is indicated for large diameter veins and advanced cases of the disease.
A gentler method is microphlebectomy, in which a section of a vein is removed in parts, not by an incision but by a puncture.
Radiofrequency ablation is considered the safest and least traumatic method of treating varicose veins, although it has some contraindications. The method consists of the thermal microwave effect as a result of the closing of the venous light. Main advantages:
- outpatient treatment;
- no need for anesthesia and incision;
- recovery doesn't take long;
- the procedure is easily tolerated;
- can be done in summer;
- there are no bruises after treatment, swelling and pain are negligible.
Radiofrequency ablation is a low-trauma method for treating varicose veins.
Laser coagulation is another method of treating varicose veins. During the procedure, a laser is applied to the vessel wall. Radiation leads to adhesion of the vein walls and complete closure of the lumen. It is performed on an outpatient basis, under local anesthesia, without incisions. A catheter is inserted into the lumen of the vein, through which an LED is inserted and radiation is delivered. The procedure is not very traumatic, complications are very rare.
This non-surgical method is one of the most common. It is used in small veins and as part of a complex treatment along with surgery. The end result is that a special medicine with a sclerosing effect is injected into a vein using a fine needle. As a result, the vessel walls unite, close and stop the blood flow. The affected vein turns into a fibrous cord. The main advantages of the method:
- outpatient treatment;
- low invasiveness;
- ease of execution;
- procedure duration is about 20 minutes;
- good cosmetic effect.
If the disease starts, a complication such as deep vein thrombosis can develop.
Pour the chopped green walnuts into a glass dish and drizzle with oil. Put in the sun for 40 days. Apply as needed, lubricating the affected area. Continue treatment for about four months.
Beat a cabbage leaf, apply a layer of olive oil on one side, apply this side to the diseased area, bandage it and leave for a day. Continue treatment for a month.
This is one of the most effective folk remedies. For the treatment of varicose veins, a tincture is prepared from the fruits of the plant, which must be crushed, filled halfway in a glass container (three liters) and filled with vodka. Remove in a dark place for a month and stir from time to time. When you're done, rub over the sore spots overnight. Chestnut alcoholic tincture for external and internal use with varicose veins can be purchased at the pharmacy.
Physical therapy is an integral part of complex treatment for varicose veins.
When varicose veins appear, the question may arise as to whether it is possible to practice physical education and sports and which exercises are useful. Most doctors agree that physical activity in this disease is very important, as dynamics are beneficial to the veins and static is harmful. But it is equally important to consult your doctor about the types of sports you can play and what type of load will be ideal. In addition, special therapeutic exercises can be presented to the patient, which are performed directly in a medical institution. At home, you can also do simple yet effective exercises that, with regular exercise, will help reduce symptoms of varicose veins.
- Lie on your back, place pillows under your feet so they are at a 20-degree angle. Close your eyes, relax completely, breathe deeply.
- In the supine position, lift your legs vertically and rotate your feet alternately in and out.
- Lie on your back and move your legs like riding a bicycle.
- Lying on your back, lift your legs and cross them (scissors).
- Stand up straight, lower your arms, legs together. Slowly go up on tiptoe and go down just as slowly.
- Walk in place, don't pull your socks off the floor.
- Sitting in a chair, bend your ankle legs towards you and away from you and then bend your toes in the same way.
- Pour over the legs with an elastic jet of water (alternately cold and hot).
Varicose veins is an irreversible process, but it must be treated without fail, especially as there are some modern methods that must be used in combination. Without treatment, there is a high risk of developing complications such as chronic venous insufficiency, phlebitis, thrombophlebitis, thrombosis, trophic ulcers, and even a condition so dangerous that it can result in death, such as pulmonary embolism.