Varicose veins (varices). Causes, risk factors, treatment of the disease.

Varicose veins (varices) is one of the most common and oldest diseases of the vascular system. With the help of the Egyptian papyri and the excavation was found a mummy with signs of varicose veins.

Definition of "Varicose" comes from the Latin word "varix", which means "extension", therefore, the disease is called "Varicose veins." This disease is characterized by expansion and increasing the length of the peripheral veins in the form serpentibus deformation and disturbance of outflow of blood on them, the resulting valve insufficiency and the weakening of their walls. The disease most often affects the veins of the lower extremities, as the main burden of the outflow of blood (large volume) falls on them, therefore, preferred this section.

varicose veins

Anatomy veins of the lower extremities

In the lower extremity there are 2 groups of veins: superficial and deep. The first group (superficial veins) is located in the subcutaneous fat; the second group (deep) is deeper, therefore, are accompanied by arteries.The first and the second group are connected to each other via the perforating veins. The skeleton wall formed by elastic and collagen fibers.
The wall of the vein is divided into 3 layers:

  • the outer layer is the adventitia, consists of loose connective tissue and smooth muscle cells arranged longitudinally surrounded by small blood vessels and nerves supply the vein
  • the middle layer - the media, composed of smooth muscle cells positioned circularly
  • the inner layer - the intima, formed by an endothelium composed of smooth muscle cells located longitudinally, it forms folds in the form of a swallow's nest, located opposite each other, bearing the name "valve" to support the tonus of the vessel wall.

The vein valves are arranged so that, provided the centripetal direction of blood from the lower extremities to the heart, from superficial to deep veins to prevent back blood flow and increasing pressure in them. When closed protected the smaller vessels (venules, capillaries) when the pressure during operation of the muscular-venous pump of the lower limb. Therefore, the defeat of the middle and/or inner layer of the venous wall leads to the development of varicose veins.

  • Superficial veins:

Large subcutaneous Vienna feet – runs along the inner side of the lower limb, has several valves, it is fed by many veins collect blood the front of the thigh
Malaya subcutaneous Vienna feet – runs along the outer side of the lower limb, also has valves in it flow into small veins side and rear surface of the leg, both veins are connected the connecting veins.

  • Deep veins: (Rear and Front large tibial vein, Popliteal Vienna, Femoral vein) is a group of veins, which are at a later stage of the disease in case of no effective treatment, or its absence.

causes of varicose veins

Causes and risk factors in the development of varicose veins

The exact cause of the disease is not known, we only know that under the influence of some factors is developing weakening of the valves, the pressure increase and loss of elasticity of the walls of the superficial and connecting veins.

Risk factors:

  • Genetic predisposition: the transfer of varicose veins by inheritance is caused by mutation of the gene responsible for the structure of the vessel wall, the result of the mutation, children are born with congenital weakness of the connective or muscular tissue of the vessel wall, or lack of it of the valve (negative number), and as a consequence there is a weakness of the vessel wall and increased pressure in the veins.
  • Hormonal changes (pregnancy, menopause): pregnancy changes the hormonal makeup of an organism (increasing the level of progesterone and decrease of estrogen) that affect the formation of clotting factors (increase them) to reduce the tone of the venous wall (as a result of destruction of collagen and elastic fibers of the vessel wall) all this leads to the formation of blood clots, blockage of blood vessels and their deformation.
  • Obesity: excess weight leads to sedentarius way of life, in which there is a slowing of blood circulation, plus excess fat increases intra-abdominal pressure, which violates the outflow of blood through the veins, resulting in the development of stagnation in the veins and the possible development of the disease.
  • Diabetes: chronic elevated levels of blood sugar over time damages blood vessels, which is a favorable environment for the development of blood clots.
  • Alcohol abuse: excessive alcohol consumption leads to dehydration and thickening of the blood, formed as a result of blood clots that clog veins and compromises blood flow.
  • Weight lifting (movers),long walking or long standing work (sellers, conductors): associated with a decrease in muscle tone, increased intra-abdominal pressure and as a consequence slowing down and obstruction of blood flow to the heart and the development of its stagnation in the lower extremities.
  • Congenital coagulation defects: congenital hypercoagulation (excessive production of clotting factors in the blood) leads to the formation of blood clots and disruption of the blood through the vessels.
  • Poor nutrition: a lack of certain vitamins in the diet (Vit.C, E, R, plant fibers play a role in strengthening the vessel wall and improve blood circulation).
  • Wearing tight underwear: wearing it constant leads to mechanical compression of the veins, causing obstruction of the venous outflow from the lower extremities.
  • Overdose of the drugs increasing blood coagulation: risk of blood clots and blockage of blood vessels.
  • Surgery a loss of some volume of blood is not a comfortable position on the operating table (the compression of certain blood vessels), leading to the risk of blood clots.

complications from varicose veins

Complications of varicose veins

  • The formation of blood clots, as a result of stagnation of blood in the veins;
  • detachment of thrombus and occlusion of the vessel coincides with its diameter;
  • thrombophlebitis (clot formation in the lumen of the vein is the inflammation of its walls);
  • pulmonary embolism (detached blood clot in the blood gets into the pulmonary artery, which participates in blood circulation in a small circle. If the clot diameter coincides with the diameter of the trunk of this artery, it can cause sudden death. If the clot is smaller in diameter, it passes on to the branches of the pulmonary artery, causing pulmonary infarction or edema).
  • sores or eczema of the legs caused eating disorders (poor blood circulation leads to lack of oxygen in the tissue, which is the main nourishment of the tissues of the body);
  • swelling different areas of the body as a result of stagnation in the veins (they are soft, elastic, bluish in color, their education does not depend on the time of day, often form in the affected area);
  • dermatitis (skin inflammation in the affected area) due to malnutrition of the site;
  • change the color of the skin in the affected area;
  • sealing subcutaneous fatty tissue in the affected area due to swelling.

Diagnosis of varicose veins

  • Duplex ultrasound scanning of the veins is the most informative method to evaluate the blood flow in the vessel and see the vessel;
  • Dopplerography is the method in which the estimated blood flow in the vessel;
  • Venography is the injection of a contrast agent intravenously and the study of the x-ray picture;
  • Phleboscintigraphy. – intravenous administration of the radiopharmaceutical and the observation on a special device.

To study only the superficial veins are used: inspection, palpation, and the first 3 of the above method. The last 2 methods are used in the defeat of the deep veins.

The treatment of varicose veins

cream against varicose veins

Non-surgical treatment

  • Drug treatment usually does not cure the disease until the end, and only improves the operation of the valves, the supply of the vessel wall and the bloodstream, prevents new clots from forming: use so-called venotonics are assigned in all cases of varicose veins. Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory creams are prescribed in cases with complications such as thrombophlebitis. Anticoagulants are appointed at later stages of the disease for the treatment and prevention of blood clots.

Recall that the optimal treatment can only pick up the attending physician taking into account individual characteristics.

  • Traditional methods of treatment (as a complement to medical treatment): wearing compression hosiery (stockings); special exercises (swimming, bike, skis, feet above the head, special exercises ("Bicycle" lying on your back and breathing, imagine that you pedal a Bicycle; alternately bend and unbend the foot at the ankle joint forward and backward) are used to enhance the outflow of blood, but only in complicated cases); contrast shower (under running water to keep the feet, gradually reducing the temperature of the water reaching the cold) ; a foot bath (not hot) decoction of oak bark, chestnut, chamomile, St. John's wort; rubbing alcohol tincture of flowers of acacia, the leaves of Kalanchoe, Apple cider vinegar; thrombophlebitis treatment with leeches.
  • The day: in the morning, slow getting up out of bed (about 5-10 minutes), during sleep puts the cushion under the heel so as to lift the leg approximately 15-200 relative to the bed, the walk must be calm, you cannot sit transierunt foot on the leg, bandaging the legs with elastic bandages from the foot to upper thigh, wearing medical stockings, good nutrition, to avoid any tedious movements and any substances or factors that contribute to thickening of the blood, with the exception of Smoking, the prevention of constipation.
  • Diet: the body needs food containing vitamins strengthen blood vessels and improves blood flow: vitamin C (contained with the citruses, tomatoes, rose hips, etc.), vitamin E ( legumes, liver, egg yolk, green onion), vitamin R (grapefruit, walnut, black currant), bioflavonoids (dark sweet cherry, sour cherry), copper (seafood). A sufficient daily amount of fluid at least 1.5 liters. Limited to the use of alcoholic drinks, coffee, marinades, smoked products.

What are effective treatment of varicose veins?

The most popular folk remedies for the treatment of varicose veins can be applied in the form of decoctions, ointments, lotions and poultices; some herbs also help in ingestion.

  • Lilac tincture

In half-liter bottle or a jar filled to the half of the leaves and flowers of lilac, pour vodka or alcohol (to the top). Insist 7 days in a dark place, from time to time shaking. Strain the tincture and use for daily greasing of the legs. Movements should be soft, in the direction from the fingertips to the knees.
This tincture helps to relieve inflammation, reduce swelling, cramps in the calves of the legs and remove the soreness.

garlic for varicose veins

  • Garlic cream

Head garlic, peel the cloves to mince or to push through the frog. Stir garlic and creamy unsalted butter (it take more than double the garlic) until smooth. From the mass to make compresses for the night.
This tool helps to remove the pain, burning, inflammation in the problem area also ointment provides healing and bactericidal action.

  • Garlic honey

For this recipe you will also need garlic (head) and a mayonnaise jar of honey. Well, if it's Linden or buckwheat honey. Components of the mix and put in a dark place for 7 days. After that, eat 1 tablespoon three times a day half an hour before meals.
Swelling, pain, tiredness in the legs disappear quickly; and reduced symptoms of varicose veins.

  • Potato juice

A few raw potatoes grate and lightly pressed mass is applied on the area of the inflamed veins. You can keep about 20-30 minutes, you can compress to leave on all night. The best effect is with the simultaneous ingestion of a half Cup of potato juice. Potato soothes irritated skin, relieves pain, burning, reduces swelling.

  • Ointment with calendula

To make an infusion of the flowers of calendula (1 tablespoon per Cup of hot water), to insist to cool. You can insist in a thermos for one hour. Then strain and mix with 250 g of fat – petrolatum, lanolin, badger fat. For a pleasant smell in the ointment, you can add 5-6 drops of essential oil of rose, bergamot, lavender, grapefruit, etc. the Mixture should be gently massage twice a day until completely absorbed. Calendula infusion can be mixed with thyme, hop cones or nettle.