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How to Tell if Your Vein Problems Are More Than Cosmetic

Last updated: January 29, 2019

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The first thing most people notice about varicose veins is not how they feel, but how they look.

To put it lightly, they can be unsightly. Those bulging purple veins aren’t exactly something you wear proudly.

However, the appearance of these veins is not solely where your attention should lie.

Rather, your concern should also be about what goes on beneath the surface — what the deeper meaning of these veins are.

Because these veins don’t just exist to look bad — they exist as a sign that something is not right and ought to be looked at.


How Varicose Veins Are Formed

There are a couple of different ways that varicose veins are formed. One of those ways is if, for some reason, your vein valves leak. The job of the valves is to keep the blood from pooling as your body is sending it back up to your heart, and if the valves are damaged in some way, they are left unable to do their job. This inability to play their major role leads to blood pooling, which can show up on the surface of your legs as varicose veins.

Another reason you may see varicose veins pop up is due to the fact that your vein walls are weakened. This means that they can’t deal with the pressure of blood flowing through them, which causes the veins to oftentimes swell and enlarge, and sometimes even twist.

And, you guessed it — that means that they will form varicose veins, which you’ll be able to see on the surface.


Here’s What To Look Out For

If you see those purple veins on your legs (or anywhere else on your body), then it’s time you look further for other signs of what could be amiss.

Here are some of the things to keep your eye out for:


1. Swelling

Varicose veins can cause pressure in your veins to build up, which, as a result, leads to leakage in the tissue surrounding the damaged vein. And this shows in the form of swelling. Not only can this swelling be uncomfortable — your skin feels as if it’s getting stretched tighter and tighter — it can also be incredibly painful.

And, things can get even worse. If the swelling goes too far, it can start to cause fluid leakage from your legs. This is a major red flag that you do not want to ignore.


2. Hyperpigmentation

Red blood cells in the tissues of the leg causes chronic inflammation and the skin becomes dark and discolored.


3. Lipodermosclerosis

When skin and fat under the skin are inflamed for a long period of time, the tissue becomes woody and hard.


4. Infection

Swelling can lead to problems in terms of making your body more susceptible to infection. Infections that typically exist just on the surface of the skin can get into the body when you’re dealing with varicose vein swelling, which can result in skin infections.


5. Bad Circulation

Varicose veins greatly affect your circulation. This is because your veins are unable to do their job properly of circulating blood through your body. Poor circulation can lead to physical exhaustion, swelling, pain, and more.


6. Leg Pain

There is no doubt that at some point, if your varicose veins are left untreated, you will suffer from pain. That pain can come in varying forms — from itching, to heat, to burning, to heaviness, and more. You may even find yourself suffering from restless leg syndrome.


7. Skin Ulcers

When varicose veins cause your body’s tissue to swell, then the nutrients and oxygen required to help your body stay safe have a more difficult time getting through. This can keep your body from properly healing, which can lead to serious venous ulcers. Venous ulcers are painful, difficult to heal, and when not appropriately treated can become infected. Sometimes, ulcers cannot be healed until blood flow in the vein is corrected.


8. Venous Ulcers

Chronic red blood cell & fluid leaking, inflammation, and tissue hardening can cause a venous leg ulcer. Venous ulcers are painful, difficult to heal, and when not appropriately treated can become infected. Sometimes, ulcers cannot be healed until blood flow in the vein is corrected.


6. Superficial and Deep Vein Thrombosis

Superficial vein thrombosis (SVT) is is a type blood clot in a vein just below the surface of the skin. SVT causes a firm, red, warm, tender spot where the vein is inflamed.

And, if you let things go even further, there is a possibility that your DVT becomes fatal. A blood clot in your leg can break loose and make its way through your body up to your lungs, which is called a pulmonary embolism.


So, if you feel that your vein problems are merely cosmetic, we highly suggest consulting a vein specialist because there could be more going on underneath the surface than meets the eye.

When it comes to your veins, you do not want to mess around. The longer you wait, the more problems build up, and the worse time you’ll have recovering from the issues. Thus, the best thing to do, at the first sign of vein issues, is to contact a vein specialist near you. And thankfully, there are over 55 Vein Clinics of America locations in 14 states, so you’re sure to have a top-notch vein specialist nearby.

Call today for your free consultation.

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