Behind each ropey, swollen varicose vein is an insufficiency in the way that blood flows through the legs. The swelling and discomfort that occurs with varicose veins stem from the pooling of blood that is being pushed, albeit poorly, toward the heart. Once pooling occurs, the condition of the vein worsens over time, which is why it is important to find appropriate treatment to redirect blood flow to a healthier vessel.
Venous insufficiency and the varicose veins that result from this weakness could develop for some reasons. Anatomical structure alone provides ample risk factor, with blood having to travel against gravity as it leaves the lower extremities. To make matters worse, circulation is also opposed by body weight. With every fluctuation in the upward direction, weight can have a direct and adverse impact on vein health.
The good news is that some of the risk factors for venous insufficiency are within your control. Some of the conditions that make varicose veins more likely include:
- Older age
- Weak muscles in the legs
- Family history of venous insufficiency
- Physical injury to the leg
- History of blood clots in the legs
It is advantageous to know your particular risk for varicose veins. However, recognizing that this condition runs in your family achieves only one benefit, really; it tells you that you want to instill healthy eating and exercise habits to promote muscle strength and good circulation.
What may be most important for individuals who either have varicose veins or have risk factors for this condition is to know that there is more than one way to approach the removal of these veins. At LA Vein Center in Sherman Oaks, patients obtain care from an experienced physician and staff who tailors care to individual need and preferences.
It used to be thought that surgical vein removal was the only way to resolve the issue of varicose veins. Today, we have advanced techniques such as sclerotherapy and radiofrequency ablation to restore a healthier appearance to the legs.