Herbs and Varicose Veins
What are Varicose Veins?
Varicose veins are veins that have become enlarged and twisted. The term commonly refers to the veins on the leg, although varicose veins occur elsewhere. Veins have leaflet valves to prevent blood from flowing backwards (retrograde). Leg muscles pump the veins to return blood to the heart. When veins become enlarged, the leaflets of the valves no longer meet properly, and the valves don’t work. The blood collects in the veins and they enlarge even more. Varicose veins are common in the superficial veins of the legs, which are subject to high pressure when standing. Besides cosmetic problems, varicose veins are often painful, especially when standing or walking. They often itch, and scratching them can cause ulcers. Serious complications are rare. Non-surgical treatments include elastic stockings, elevating the legs, and exercise. The standard surgical treatment is vein stripping to remove the affected veins. Newer surgical treatments are less invasive but have not been tested as thoroughly. Since most of the blood in the legs is returned by the deep veins, and the superficial veins only return about 10%, they can be removed without serious harm. Varicose veins are distinguished from reticular veins (blue veins) and telangiectasias (spider veins) which also involve valvular insufficiency, by the size and location of the veins.
* Aching, heavy legs (often worse at night and after exercise)
* Ankle swelling
* A brownish-blue shiny skin discoloration around the veins
* Skin over the vein may become dry, itchy and thin, leading to eczema (venous eczema)
* The skin may darken (stasis dermatitis), because of the waste products building up in the legs
* Minor injuries to the area may bleed more than normal and/or take a long time to heal
* Rarely, there is a large amount of bleeding from a ruptured vein
* In some people the skin above the ankle may shrink (lipodermatosclerosis) because the fat underneath the skin becomes hard.
* Restless Leg Syndrome. Restless Leg Syndrome appears to be a common overlapping clinical syndrome in patients with varicose veins and other chronic venous insufficiency.
Most varicose veins are relatively benign, but severe varicosities can lead to major complications, due to the poor circulation through the affected limb.
* Pain, heaviness, inability to walk or stand for long hours thus hindering work
* Skin conditions / Dermatitis which could predispose skin loss
* Bleeding : life threatening bleed from injury to the varicose vein
* Ulcer : non healing varicose ulcer could threaten limb amputation.
* Development of carcinoma or sarcoma in longstanding venous ulcers. There have been over 100 reported cases of malignant transformation and the rate is reported as 0.4% to 1%. * Coagulation of blood in varicose veins cause superficial thrombosis, deep vein thrombosis (DVT), Pulmonary Embolism (PE) & could precipitate stroke in the rare case of predisposed individuals (that is, patients with patent foramen ovale).
Varicose veins are more common in women than in men, and are linked with heredity. Other related factors are pregnancy, obesity, menopause, aging, prolonged standing, leg injury and abdominal straining. Varicose veins are bulging veins that are larger than spider veins, typically 3 mm or more in diameter.
Non-surgical treatment .
Elevating the legs provides relief. “Advice about regular exercise sounds sensible but is not supported by any evidence.” The wearing of graduated compression stockings with a pressure of 30–40 mmHg has been shown to correct the swelling, nutritional exchange, and improve the microcirculation in legs affected by varicose veins. They also often provide relief from the discomfort associated with this disease. Caution should be exercised in their use in patients with concurrent arterial disease.
The symptoms of varicose veins can be controlled to an extent with either of the following:
* anti-inflammatory medication such as VeinsLess Tonic can be used as part of treatment for superficial thrombophlebitis along with graduated compression hosiery.
Complications for radiofrequency ablation include bruising, burns, paraesthesia, clinical phlebitis, and slightly higher rates of deep vein thrombosis (0.57%) and pulmonary embolism (0.17%). Complications for endovenous laser treatment also include brusing (24%-100%), burns (4.8%), paraesthesia (1%-36.5%), and induration along the length of the saphenous vein (55-100%).
Another concern in varicose vein surgery is the recurrence rate. Because the new treatments haven’t been studied that long, their recurrence rates aren’t known that well. For traditional surgery, reported recurrence rates, which have been tracked for 10 years, range from 5-60%. One 3-year study compared radiofrequency, with a recurrence rate of 33%, to open surgery, which had a recurrence rate of 23%. The longest study of endovenous laser ablation is 39 months.
Also make sure you take a daily spoonful of ABC Daily Herbal NutriPowder Plus
Order VeinsLess Herbal Tonic and Veins Lotion (containing Horse Chestnut)