Varicose veins are known for the uncomfortable symptoms they cause. The poor circulation of blood in a varicose vein often leads to cramping, heaviness, swelling, pain, and itching. Each of these symptoms can worsen over time if the vein is not treated. In the case of itching, it can turn into a rash known as varicose eczema or stasis dermatitis.
Varicose eczema often appears as discolored, inflamed skin on the ankles and lower legs. This rash occurs because, when blood is pooling in the vein, some fluid leaks into the surrounding skin. Fluid accumulation blocks oxygen from nourishing the skin, resulting in redness and scaly patches. The severity of the rash may range from mild inflammation to an infected sore that will not heal.
Is This Rash Preventable?
Rashes and ulceration are common side effects of venous insufficiency. One study suggests that these side effects may resolve more quickly with early intervention. The best form of treatment is to have the veins treated professionally. Dr. Lee provides a range of services, from sclerotherapy to radiofrequency ablation to Venaseal vein closure treatment, all of which are performed in the office. Closing the affected vein allows blood to circulate more freely through nearby healthy veins. With better circulation, symptoms of varicose veins resolve.
Managing Varicose Vein Skin Rash
The following strategies may help reduce the skin rash as well as other symptoms of varicose veins:
- Compression stockings. The tight-weave of compression socks press on the lower legs to prevent blood and fluid stagnation. Some compression stockings can be purchased in a store or online. Stronger compression may be acquired through a doctor.
- Elevate the feet and legs. When the symptoms of varicose veins worsen, which they can after a long day, it is beneficial to elevate the feet above the heart. This can be done for 15 minutes every 2 hours until symptoms subside.
- Moisturize the skin. This helps maintain moisture that can soothe inflammation.
- Get moving. The more we move, the more our blood circulates through the body. In particular, it is necessary to move the calf muscles in the lower leg. This can be achieved by walking, climbing stairs, or doing toe-raises.
Varicose veins create a myriad of other problems, including skin rashes and ulcers. Don’t let this happen to your legs. Contact LA Vein Center at 818-696-8680 to schedule our consultation for varicose vein treatment in Los Angeles.