Do You Need to See a Vascular Surgeon for Varicose Veins?
You have varicose veins, but does that really require a vascular surgeon? The answer is yes, because most of the treatments involve minimally invasive surgical procedures. It is easy to see the word surgeon and panic, but not all surgeries involve heavy anesthesia and long hospital stays. Learn more about treatment for varicose veins in Houston and when you need to see a doctor for treatment.
What is a Varicose Vein?
Veins are responsible for returning blood to the heart to get oxygen. To facilitate this process, veins have one-stop valves built into the walls. Muscles in the vein walls contract to push blood towards the heart. At the same time, the valves open to allow the blood to go through. When the muscle relaxes, the valves close to trap the blood and keep it from flowing back towards the ground.
As a person ages, the vein walls become stiff and lose the ability to stretch, so valves that don’t close fully. A gap in a valve allows blood to flow back and sections of a vein become engorged. This is a varicose vein.
Are Varicose Veins Dangerous?
Varicose veins are common, and on their own, not a problem in need of treatment at a Houston area vein clinic. They can indicate a more serious condition; however, that does need attention. Varicose veins can be a sign of venous insufficiency, meaning the network of veins in your legs is not functioning well.
When Do You Need to See a Doctor for Varicose Veins?
Most people have one or two varicose veins that go unnoticed. The key is to watch for signs of a more serious condition developing.
- Your leg swells and is painful – This may indicate a blood clot forming and needs immediate evaluation.
- You see bleeding under the skin – The vein is leaking blood
- A lump forms on the leg – This means the vein is inflamed or may have a clot
- A sore, or ulcer, forms on your leg – Venous ulcers form due to pressure from pooling blood. They are often chronic and difficult to heal
- If you have diabetes or high blood pressure – these conditions may lead to complications
Anytime your legs are uncomfortable and you see no improvement with lifestyle changes or home treatments, the next step would be to make an appointment with vein doctors for further evaluation.
What Can You Do at Home for Varicose Veins?
Self-care can improve your leg health and reduce problems with varicose veins. Losing weight, for example, takes the pressure off the veins, so the valves leak less. Other home care options include:
- Exercise to improve the blood circulation in the legs
- Avoid high heal shoes and tight clothing
- Put your legs up when you can
- Avoid crossing your legs when you sit
The goal is to improve the overall circulation in your legs and help blood move more efficiently. When home measures fail, however; it is time to go to a vein clinic for a more comprehensive treatment plan.
Related post: Who should treat your varicose veins in Houston?
Related post: Varicose vein treatment in Houston.