Relief Treatments for Varicose Veins
Usually varicose veins are found in the legs and ankles. They are veins that are enlarged and twisted and can usually be found located near the surface of the skin. Most of the time they aren't serious, but they can lead to other problems.
Varicose veins appear to be dark blue, twisted and swollen under the skin. There are some people who don't have any symptoms. For those who have symptoms they can vary from mild to serious. Some of the mild symptoms are:
- Legs feeling heavy
- Pain in your legs
- Swelling in feet and ankles
- Itching over the veins
These are the symptoms of a more serious case of varicose veins:
- Leg swelling
- Color of skin changes
- Dry, thinned skin
- Open sores or bleeding after a minor injury.
Usually varicose veins aren't serious and can be treated at home to help relieve some of the symptoms and from keeping them from getting worse. You can:
- Elevate your legs
- Wear compression stockings
- Don't stand or sit to long
If the home treatments don't help there are other options. These are usually used for the more serious varicose veins. These treatments include:
- Sclerotherapy. This is a treatment that doesn't include surgery and is used mainly for cosmetic purposes on small spider-like veins. A chemical called sclerosant is injected into the varicose veins. The injection damages and scars the inside lining of the vein. This closes the veins which force the blood to find healthier veins. Usually, this treatment is used for spider veins making them less noticeable, and often making the veins go away completely.
- Laser treatment. This type of treatment is called ablation, which scars and destroys the varicose veins. A laser fiber is inserted into the skin making the vein close up.
- Radio frequency treatment. Instead of using laser energy, radio frequency is used inside the vein to close up the vein. This procedure is used on large varicose veins. Radio frequency is a relatively new procedure and isn't available in all areas.
- Ligation and stripping. Out of all the procedures this is the most expensive and requires some healing time. Incisions are made over the varicose veins, where the vein is actually tied off (ligated) and then removed (stripped). Usually used on the more severe varicose veins.
One thing that you will want to remember is that all the different types of treatments can leave scars and discoloration on the skin.
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