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How to get rid of recurring bulging veins in legs

Have you ever experienced bulging veins in your legs (not varicose)? Veins and Arteries carry blood to and from the heart in the human body. The deoxygenated blood moves back to the heart through veins. Veins have valves that help in moving blood from different parts of the body to the heart. Sometimes, the valves inside the veins malfunction, and instead of sending the blood back to the heart, they push back the blood in the reverse direction. This results in the bulging of the veins that receive the blood flow in reverse. This phenomenon is called ‘Venous Reflux’.

During the treatment of varicose veins, the veins that have malfunctioning valves are disconnected and the veins are ablated (closed) so that the blood does not flow through the malfunctioning valves and reach the heart through other vein pathways.  Most commonly, varicose veins occur in the legs.

What causes recurrence of varicose veins?

If the treatment was not done completely

Surgical treatment of varicose veins involves cutting off the blood flow to the damaged veins and providing an alternative route.  When the damaged veins stop receiving blood back from malfunctioning valves, it shrinks and disappears eventually.   In some cases, the damaged veins may be removed completely.

When treating varicose veins, the treatment has to be extensive. That is, all the malfunctioning valves and veins must be treated. This can happen in multiple sessions. But, if the doctor happens to leave/miss any of the damaged valves and veins without correcting them, varicose veins will come back for obvious reasons.  A duplex ultrasound test will be done to identify all the veins through which the blood is flowing in the legs.

Venous insufficiency, a long term progressive condition

Some patients may have varicose veins through the genes that run in the family. In such cases, varicose veins may only represent the initial phase of venous insufficiency, a long-term progressive condition for which there is no complete cure.  An expert doctor can make up a treatment plan to treat the symptoms of the problem and also plan to reduce the recurrence of varicose veins.

Deep vein thrombosis

Deep vein thrombosis is an obstructive disease. People suffering from deep vein thrombosis can expect varicose veins to return even after successful treatment.  Such people must be in constant contact with their vascular disease specialist for further courses of action/treatment.

Pregnancy and being overweight

Even if you are successfully treated, varicose veins can return if you do not maintain healthy weight or become pregnant. You will need to be in touch with your vascular surgeon and/or gynecologist and take constant advice to prevent recurrence. Maintaining healthy weight is also very important.  You will be advised to start working out at least 30 minutes every day.

Recurrence of varicose veins also depends on the way the body heals

After surgery, the body tries to heal itself. In this process, new veins may form or the closed veins may open up.  When the new veins are formed and if they are connected to the malfunctioning valves, the bulging of veins can happen again. Similarly, if the closed veins are reopened, the blood flows back into them and results in bulging.

Treatment of (recurring) varicose veins

Many doctors and patients prefer minimally invasive procedures to treat varicose veins. They include:

  1. Laser therapy – an energy beam using laser is focused on the defective veins which will make them fade and go away.
  2. Sclerotherapy – A chemical is injected into small and medium-sized varicose veins which will make them collapse and go away eventually.
  3. RF ablation (Radio Frequency Ablation) – Uses high-frequency radio waves that seal and shut off the varicose veins.
  4. Phlebectomy or ‘vein stripping’ – As the name suggests, this procedure involves removing the vein. This can be combined with other procedures depending on the case and the doctor’s decision. This surgery may be performed as an outpatient procedure.

How can you prevent varicose veins from recurring?

You will need to go to an expert vascular surgeon for treating your varicose veins. An inexperienced or incompetent specialist may leave out (unknowingly) some of the malfunctioning valves and veins that can result in recurrence of varicose veins.

Laser Vein Clinic, Chennai, hosts highly specialized and experienced vascular surgeons who can take care of every minute detail during the treatment of varicose veins. Typical recurrence of varicose veins in patients is around 3 – 5 years and in some cases, it may be even 8 years. Our expert doctors are always approachable post treatment for any medical advice and can help you in preventing or postponing the recurrence of varicose veins.

What are some home remedies for varicose veins?

What are Varicose Veins?

Before we learn about home remedies for varicose veins, we need to know what varicose veins are. Varicose Veins are a condition where the veins in certain parts of the body get enlarged, swollen and twisted. They can be seen distinctly, just under the skin and often appear blue or purple. Varicose veins are most commonly observed in the legs.

Did you know that around 20 per cent of adults experience Varicose Veins?

Home remedies for Varicose Veins

There are numerous medical treatments available for Varicose Veins. However, there also exists some home remedies that one can follow to prevent, reduce or even cure Varicose Veins. Some of them are listed below;

  1. Clothes

Avoid wearing tight clothing like skinny jeans, uncomfortable leggings, under-sized socks, stockings, etc. These kinds of clothes can restrict blood circulation. Unrestricted blood circulation is of great importance in the fight against varicose veins.

  • Sleeping Position

Since varicose veins occur more often in the legs, it is advisable to sleep in a position where the legs are slightly elevated. Keeping a pillow underneath the legs during sleep is a simpler solution.

  • Sitting Position

One should always be mindful of their sitting position if he/she has a history, of symptoms or is affected by Varicose Veins. Crossing the legs while sitting should be avoided at all times because it would restrict smooth blood flow and may also cause physical pain depending upon the severity of the condition.

  • Food

Food rich in fiber and potassium is highly recommended. Cutting down the salt in daily diet is also suggested to prevent water retention.

  • Exercise

Exercising is a great way to lower the risk of varicose veins. It helps to lower a person’s blood pressure and also improves the circulation of blood in the body. This prevents the blood from being collected in the veins. Some recommended exercises are;

  • Running
  • Jogging
  • Cycling
  • Swimming
  • Dancing
  • Compression Stockings

These are available in stores that sell medical equipment. These stockings apply some pressure to the veins letting more blood flow toward the heart.  Knee-high stockings are also available. People using knee-high stockings have reported a reduction in swelling and pain after one week of using them.

  • Herbs / Plant-based foods:

Horse Chestnut Extract (Aesculus Hippocastanum L) – Extract derived from these nuts has proven to reduce leg pain, heaviness, and also itching in people suffering from chronic venous insufficiency, which is a major cause of varicose veins.

Sea Pine Extract (Pinus Maritima), and Butcher’s broom extract (Ruscus Aculeatus) both help in reducing leg swelling or edema associated with this condition.

  • Massaging the area:

Gently massaging the affected areas can help blood move through the veins. You can use massage oil or moisturizer for easier massaging. Avoid pressing the veins directly.

  • Be on the move as much as possible:

Try to get up and take a stroll at regular intervals if you are sitting for a longer time. This helps in smoother blood flow.