Varicose veins are hard to ignore – any way you view them. Aside from the gnarled and twisted appearance of severe varicose veins of the legs, other symptoms usually exist that point to this condition.
Varicose veins occur because the veins in your legs – those whose task it is to carry the blood back to your heart – have lost their elasticity. Moreover, the tiny valves which allow for the blood to be carried forward – and not rush backward in the vein – have weakened slightly. These two situations are responsibly for the accumulation of standing blood in your veins which create the protrusion and the sometimes unsightly appearance of this condition.
Some other indications you may be affected with varicose veins include:
- An aching or heaviness in your legs. Many people are plagued with this, which for some people worsen by the end of the day.
- Burning, throbbing. Most often people note that this occurs in their lower legs.
- Cramping. If you find that your legs cramp up, this may be caused by varicose veins. Cramps are involuntary contractions of your muscles. Of course other reasons may cause this cramping as well, such as a lack of calcium.
- Swelling. An abnormal swelling in your lower leg may indicate the presence of varicose veins.
- Itching. If you have an itch that centers around one or more of your veins, this very well could indicate the appearance of this health condition.
- Skin ulcers. The formation of skin ulcers around your ankles is the symptom of a severe form of vascular disease. You should seek immediate medical attention.
Some individuals complain of spider veins. These are similar to varicose veins, only smaller. They’re also usually present closer to the surface of the skin. While varicose veins are always blue in color, spider veins can be either red or blue. Most often located on the legs, this condition may also appear on the face. The exact size of these veins varies, but in many cases they do resemble a spider’s web. Some people develop spider veins that also resemble the branches of a tree.
For the most part, varicose veins are a harmless – purely cosmetic – condition. If you discover that your legs are causing you severe discomfort, or skin ulcers, consult with your personal care physician to ensure that no complications have developed.
Normally, if the veins aren’t health threatening, your doctor will probably recommend that you wear support hose to help tighten the veins and caution you to stay off of your feet if at all possible.