Symptoms and treatment of varicose veins

varicose veins

Vascular problems are a fairly common occurrence in modern society more and more often. Nowadays, varicose veins of the extremities are diagnosed not only in the elderly. The disease affects young people and even children.

What are the symptoms of varicose veins on the legs, arms and other parts of the body? The first signs of the disease are very important to know. Since the effectiveness of all subsequent treatment depends on a timely diagnosis.

The symptoms of varicose veins on the legs and other parts of the body will be the subject of this article. We will also talk about the causes of diseases and the necessary preventive measures to prevent the development of the pathological process. And, of course, let's pay attention to all kinds of treatment methods for varicose veins in the legs, arms or other organs.

It is believed that the disease affects only the limbs of the human body. However, it is not. Recently, doctors are increasingly diagnosing pelvic varicose veins in women. Also, pathology is found in the veins of the esophagus and other internal organs. How can such anomalies be identified and treated? Let's find out.

Definition of ailment

Before knowing what a disease is, it is necessary to obtain general information about the structure of the human circulatory system.

As you know, the blood in our body circulates through the vessels. Arteries are the vessels through which blood flows from the heart to various organs and tissues. Veins are also vessels, but blood flows through them in the opposite direction - from organs and tissues to the heart.

In order for this to proceed in the right direction, there are one-way valves inside each vein. They provide the necessary blood circulation in the right direction. What else is achieved with such valves? Blood does not accumulate in one place, but circulates and enriches the body.

what does varicose veins look like

Varicose veins are characterized by damage to intravascular valves or even their complete absence. As a result, the general blood flow is disturbed, it accumulates in the place where the pathology is detected. Because of this, the veins swell and dilate abnormally.

There are several types of veins in our body - superficial (located immediately under the skin), deep (hidden deep in muscle tissue) and communicative (connect the first two types).

The most commonly diagnosed varicose veins are superficial veins, for example, on the legs in the knee, calf or thigh area. However, the disease can also affect the vessels located in the pelvic area or rectum.

Lower limbs

First, let's pay attention to the varicose veins of the lower extremities. Outwardly, the disease manifests itself in the form of purple, blue or bluish-green veins under the skin, which curl and protrude outward. Similar manifestations can be seen in the photo below.

Causes of varicose veins of the legs

The main cause of the onset of the disease, as mentioned above, is the pathological processes occurring in the blood vessels themselves. What could trigger these changes?

The main provocateurs of the disease include a hereditary predisposition to deformation of the veins. Also, excessive loads on the legs can have a negative effect on the vessels, for example, when a person, due to his professional employment, constantly stands or walks. It is not surprising that teachers, athletes, and hairdressers have a predisposition to this disease.

Other negative factors affecting vascular elasticity are overweight, hormonal changes, cardiovascular diseases (eg, thrombosis).

Do not forget about bad habits, which have a negative effect not only on the veins, but on the entire body as a whole. It is clear that smoking and alcohol abuse may well provoke the development of a pathological process in the blood vessels.

Pregnancy can often provoke the development of an ailment, which is a great stress and load for the whole body of a woman. Also, carrying a baby affects the hormonal background of the expectant mother, which can also cause pathological processes in the circulatory system. However, it is worth remembering that, as such, pregnancy is not the cause of varicose veins. Carrying a fetus can be the reason or one of the reasons for the manifestation of the disease.

It's no secret that most often the disease is diagnosed in women, and this is not always associated with the period of pregnancy or hormonal changes. Wearing uncomfortable shoes (too narrow or with very large heels) is another of the main reasons for the development of varicose veins of the lower extremities.

Various lesions of the veins can be an important factor in the development of abnormal expansion of blood vessels. This can include trauma or inflammation in the vessels, as well as the formation of blood clots.

How to detect a disease at an early stage in order to start timely and high-quality treatment? Let's find out.

Details of the symptoms

The earliest sign of a problem is pain in the legs, namely in the place where the valve was broken. It is also very important to pay attention to discomfort in the lower extremities, as if the leg was heavy. This feeling is an important signal of vascular deformation.

Abnormal protrusion of veins is another sign of the development of pathology. Dark purple streaks appear under the skin, they curl and swell.

The skin in the area of ​​the affected vessel becomes dry, may peel and darken, itch and itch. At the site of the development of the pathological process, edema forms, the skin becomes swollen or swollen.

If you do not pay attention to these manifestations in time, the symptoms may worsen. A person begins to be bothered by cramps, open ulcers form in the area of ​​the varicose process, which can bleed and cause pain. Wounds are a possibility of infection, so you should consult a doctor as soon as possible so as not to complicate an already difficult situation.

Identifying a disease

how to identify an ailment

What will the hospital say? Most likely, the specialist will refer you to the necessary examinations in order to diagnose the ailment and exclude other probable diseases.

The most important diagnostic measure is the physical examination of the patient. The patient will be asked to stand, sit and wave their legs. It is on the basis of an external examination that the diagnosis will be made.

After that, the doctor may recommend to undergo ultrasound Doppler, on the basis of which it will be possible to examine the blood flow and, if available, detect a thrombus.

An angiogram may also be prescribed by a specialist. This study involves the introduction of a certain dye into the vein, thanks to which the structure of the vessels and their pathological changes will be clearly visible on the X-ray.

General principles of recovery

Is it possible to cure varicose veins at home? Yes, especially when it comes to the initial stages of the disease.

The first thing your doctor will recommend is to adjust your weight and nutrition program. That is, if the patient has extra pounds, then he should go on a special diet in order to normalize his body weight. If the patient's weight is normal, then he will still need to monitor his diet, avoiding fatty and salty foods, which can negatively affect the blood vessels, as well as provoke obesity.

Moreover, a therapeutic diet can mean avoiding strong coffee (and sometimes even tea), smoked meats and canned food. Alcoholic drinks are also one hundred percent contraindication for people suffering from varicose veins. It is very important to eat plenty of vegetables and fruits (including fresh juices), grains and soybeans. And, of course, don't forget the greens. Parsley, dill and salad are what will help to cope with any ailment!

treatment recommendations

Also, the attending physician may prescribe the wearing of compression underwear, for example, stockings or even tights.

Many men can be complex about such an unusual treatment for varicose veins in their legs. However, do not dwell on this problem. Compression underwear is a fairly common method of treating vascular pathologies of the lower extremities. Its judicious use will not only save the patient from unpleasant symptoms and painful sensations, but also help prevent the progression of the disease. In some cases, such a garment will be recommended for the patient for continuous use throughout his life. Very often, compression stockings are prescribed to pregnant women to relieve their condition during gestation, when the body cannot be helped in any other way.

The essence of this medical garment is that they squeeze the leg in the ankle area, gradually weakening the effect on the skin up the leg. This stimulates proper blood circulation towards the heart.

Now on sale you can find various compression stockings and tights, differing from each other not only in size, but also in the degree of compression (pressure applied to the leg).

Another way to treat varicose veins is the appointment of special gymnastics for the legs. The specialist recommends certain exercises for the patient to help normalize blood flow in the extremities.

Moving on to medication

To help fight the disease, special ointments and oral medications can be prescribed, the purpose of which is to thin the blood and improve its circulation. Also, such drugs can strengthen the walls of blood vessels, relieve inflammation, and relieve pain.

Most often, doctors prescribe phlebotonics (or venotonic drugs). They improve lymph drainage, strengthen the walls of blood vessels, give them elasticity, and reduce capillary permeability.

Also, the patient can be prescribed antiplatelet agents that dissolve clots and improve blood flow by inhibiting platelet aggregation and suppressing their adhesion.

During an exacerbation of the disease, it is very important to take drugs that would prevent blood clotting. For this purpose, the attending physician may prescribe drugs based on heparin or its derivatives.

According to experts, it is best to use non-steroidal drugs against inflammation.

And, of course, we shouldn't forget about ointments. Local drugs are presented in huge quantities on the pharmaceutical market.

More radical treatments

radical treatments

The methods described above do not always achieve the desired result.

In such cases, your healthcare professional may recommend non-invasive therapy options. What do they include? Let's discuss each method.

Laser Treatment

One of the most gentle methods of treating varicose veins is the use of a laser on the surface of the epidermis. A small flash of light illuminating the walls of the vein contributes to the development of the sclerosis process, as a result of which the affected vein disappears, as if it were removed.

Intravenous laser coagulation is another procedure for treating varicose veins. However, it involves making a small incision at a location just above or just below the affected vein. A catheter is then inserted into the vessel and an ultrasound is sent. The laser action lasts about a minute, after which the patient feels heat in the area of ​​the affected vein, which, after a certain time, disappears, becoming part of the connective tissue.

Since the patient is given local anesthesia before the procedure, the person feels absolutely nothing. After manipulation, a feeling of heaviness in the lower extremities, bruising is possible. However, this does not in any way affect the recovery period. The very next day, the patient can go to work and go about their usual activities.

Radio Frequencies

Along with the laser, the ablation method can also be used, which is carried out in almost the same way as the laser coagulation described above. The only difference is the equipment used. Instead of a laser, the specialist uses radio frequency energy, which enters the affected vessel through the catheter, heats it until the walls of the vein collapse and it closes. After that, the blood is directed to another channel - to a healthy vessel.


It involves the complete or partial removal of the affected vessel. Surgery for varicose veins is prescribed only as a last resort, when other methods of treatment have failed. To combat varicose veins, surgeons use various surgical techniques. Some of them will be listed below:

  • Crossctomy.
  • Venoextraction.
  • Miniflebectomy.
  • Endoscopy.

The essence of these manipulations is as follows: small incisions are made on the leg in several places (most often under and over the affected area), after which a thin flexible wire is inserted into the vessel, which removes the diseased vein. These operations are done quite often, and almost always they pass without complications, but they entail certain risks and inconveniences.

For example, such surgical interventions are performed under general or spinal anesthesia. The use of anesthesia can lead to allergic reactions to the drugs used, bleeding opening, and breathing problems.

Among other negative factors that may arise after the operation, it is necessary to mention the possibility of infection, bruising and swelling in the affected area, nerve damage, irritation of the veins or the formation of blood clots inside the vessels. Also, one should not forget that the implementation of surgical intervention does not guarantee the absence of recurrence in the future.

The postoperative period does not last long. After one or two days, the patient can start his daily duties. He will be advised to wear compression garments for a week.


This is one of the methods of treating varicose veins, which should also be paid attention to, and it can be carried out directly in the doctor's office without hospitalization. In the process of manipulation, a special chemical solution is injected into the diseased vein, which acts as an irritant, as a result of which the vein thickens and closes. After that, blood circulation is carried out through healthy vessels.

This procedure is useful when a small vein in the knee is affected. Sclerotherapy is usually combined with other methods of treating varicose veins.

Various preparations are used as a chemical solution. After the manipulation, the patient will need to wear compression bandages impregnated with a sclerosing agent. The wearing time will be determined by the attending physician individually.

The side effects of such injections include the following negative manifestations:

  • The appearance of blood clots in other vessels of the lower extremities.
  • Headaches.
  • Pain in the lower back.
  • Temporary visual impairment.
  • Fainting.
  • Irritation of the epidermis around the injection site.

Still, most patients tolerate sclerotherapy well. If the contraindications are taken into account, and the manipulation is performed correctly, a positive result in the treatment of varicose veins is ensured.

People's first aid kit

Is it possible to cure the disease with alternative medicine? In some cases, yes, especially when it comes to the primary manifestations of the disease, and if the treatment by grandmother's methods will be carried out with the permission of the attending physician.

So, what components should you stock up on to begin effective treatment of pathology? First of all, let's take apple cider vinegar. Stir two teaspoons of the product in a glass of water, add a little honey and drink on an empty stomach in the morning.

Apple cider vinegar can also be used for topical application in the form of rubbing, after dissolving it in water (ratio 1 to 10). Rub the affected area with gentle movements at night - by morning, the unpleasant symptoms should decrease.

Chestnut tincture is often used against varicose veins. To do this, collect beautiful and undamaged fruits and grind them through a meat grinder. Then fifty grams of raw materials are poured into a half-liter bottle of vodka and placed in a dark place for two weeks. After that, the tincture is filtered and taken internally thirty to forty drops per tablespoon of water half an hour before meals three or four times a day. The course of such treatment is a month. Then they take a break of two weeks and, if necessary, repeat again.

This tincture can also be used to rub the affected area overnight.

An old method of getting rid of varicose veins is to use leeches. How much hirudotherapy is necessary in each individual case is up to the patient and his attending physician to decide.

So, we have paid enough attention to the varicose veins of the lower extremities. Now let's talk about other types of ailment.

Small pelvic vessels

varicose veins of the pelvic organs

This pathology is very easy to confuse with gynecological ailments in women.

Varicose veins in the pelvic region can be regarded as hormonal disorders, pathology of the genitourinary system, or even ordinary sciatica. However, it is very important to identify the disease as early as possible. Varicose veins of the pelvis in women can provoke malfunctioning of the ovaries and the entire circulatory system.

What are the causes of this intimate ailment?

Disease provocateurs

The main reasons for the development of the disease include severe pregnancy, regular high-intensity physical activity, a sedentary lifestyle, some gynecological diseases, prolonged use of hormonal medications, dissatisfaction with sexual life, and so on. Most often, varicose veins of the small pelvis occurs against the background of an increased amount of estrogen. And, of course, do not forget that being overweight and bad habits do not improve, but only exacerbate the situation.

How to identify such a disease?

This is an important symptom

First of all, pelvic varicose veins manifests itself in pains of varying intensity, which are aggravated after or during intercourse, physical exertion or prolonged stay in the same position. Also, the disease is characterized by bleeding, frequent urination, accompanied by painful sensations, swelling, redness of the vulva or perineum, burning or itching in this area.

A few words about treatment

how to treat pelvic varicose veins

How to get rid of pathological enlargement of the pelvic veins? First of all, you should contact a specialist. He can recommend wearing compression underwear and special gymnastics (these are well-known exercises performed in a supine position - “birch”, “scissors” and “bicycle”).

Among the popular methods, decoctions of dandelion or chaga root, as well as chestnut tinctures, have proven to be the most effective.

And what can you say about another type of varicose veins - pathology of the gastrointestinal tract?

Digestive organs

Esophageal varicose veins are not considered a very common ailment, most often the disease is a concomitant symptom of some more serious disease.

Why does such a pathology arise, and how to define it?

Briefly about the causes and symptoms

The main reasons for the expansion of the veins of the esophagus are congestion in the vessels of the liver, provoked by thrombosis or cirrhosis. This pathology is most often diagnosed in men, as well as in patients with serious chronic diseases, especially those over fifty. How to identify an ailment?

Esophageal varicose veins are most often asymptomatic, manifesting themselves in rare bouts of heartburn, heaviness in the abdomen, difficulty in swallowing, belching. Sometimes, patients may show external signs of a pathological process - protrusion of blood vessels and veins on the anterior wall of the abdomen (abdominal cavity).

Most often, an ailment is diagnosed during a crisis, that is, when the vein wall ruptures and bleeding occurs. In most cases, bleeding is accompanied by vomiting (bloody), decreased blood pressure, general weakness, increased heart rate, bloody discharge (or impurities) in the feces.

If such symptoms appear, it is imperative to take a blood test and take an X-ray (with the introduction of special contrast solutions).

Treatment of esophageal pathology

Most often, this disease is treated in intensive care. In conditions of bleeding, the initial task of doctors is to eliminate it. For this, astringent preparations, colloidal solutions, blood-rebuilding agents can be used. In some cases, doctors recommend transfusion of blood or its main components (or blood substitutes).

If the above methods do not work, specialists may consider it appropriate to perform an operation or sclerotherapy of the esophagus. After recovery, the patient will need to adhere to a fairly strict diet for life. Proper nutrition will include fractional meals, avoiding fatty, smoked, salty and fried foods, avoiding hot or too cold foods, and so on.


It is known that disease is easier to prevent than to cure. What measures should be taken to prevent the occurrence of a pathological process in the veins?

First of all - a healthy lifestyle! A reasonable diet, moderate physical activity, getting rid of bad habits, wearing comfortable shoes and clothes - all this will help not only improve your well-being, but also avoid many serious ailments. Good health to you!