Are Varicose Veins Only a Risk to Those Who Are Overweight?

Varicose veins are extremely common, yet many people still have no idea what actually causes the condition or how it can be treated. One risk factor which is widely known is obesity. However, does this mean you’re only at risk of getting varicose veins if you’re overweight?

Here, you’ll discover more about the potential causes of varicose veins and why obesity isn’t the only risk factor you need to worry about.

What causes varicose veins?

There’s actually a number of causes of varicose veins and being overweight isn’t the leading risk factor. Genetics play a far bigger role in the development of the condition.

It’s estimated 30% of adults are affected by varicose veins, or venous disease, during their lifetime. It can occur at virtually any age, though like many other conditions, the risk does increase the older you become.

So, what about the link between weight and varicose veins? Well, some experts argue obesity has no impact on the condition whatsoever. However, it can increase the likelihood your varicose veins will worsen over time. This is because, the more weight that’s placed upon the legs, the more pressure it places on the valves. So, if they’re already weak, being overweight can make the condition worse. That’s why you’ll often see pregnant women develop varicose veins as they gain weight. It’s not a cause of the condition, but it can be an aggravator.

Other potential risk factors include standing or sitting still for long periods of time and gender. Women are more prone to develop the condition than men. Whatever the cause, it’s important to seek treatment as soon as possible.

Getting varicose veins treated

Before seeking treatment, it’s a good idea to book a consultation with a vein specialist to ensure you choose the best treatment type for you. There’s are a number of treatments available so matching the right treatment to your individual requirements is vital.

If left untreated, varicose veins will likely worsen over time, potentially leading to serious complications. So, book a consultation now and eliminate those varicose veins once and for all.

Why January and February are the Best Months to Treat Varicose Veins

It’s said that varicose veins affect approximately 30% of us at some time in our lives. Treatments for this common condition have improved dramatically over the years, with many cutting-edge, non-invasive procedures now available.

While treatment can be carried out at any time of year, January and February are said to be the best months to seek treatment. Here, you’ll discover why it’s good to treat the veins in winter and the various treatment options available.

Why winter is the perfect time for varicose vein treatment

The key symptom of venous disease is large, visible, bulging veins which typically appear on the legs. Understandably, this can cause a great deal of embarrassment for those suffering from the condition. In winter, you don’t need to worry too much about this problem as the majority of the body is kept well covered. However, as the weather hots up, it can prove really uncomfortable trying to cover the legs to hide the condition.

That’s why it’s recommended that treatment is sought in the winter months. It can take a few months to see the results of varicose vein treatments, so getting on top of it now means you won’t need to worry once summer arrives. Instead, you’ll be able to show off your legs, varicose vein free.

What varicose vein treatment options are available?

There’s a lot of treatment options available these days. Compression stockings tend to be the first recommended step; particularly for those with very mild venous disease. These can be prescribed for up to six months, but for moderate and severe varicose veins, a more permanent type of treatment will be required.

Just some of the treatment options available today, include:

A vein specialist will assess the condition and recommend the best treatment to suit your individual circumstances. It could be that laser treatment is the best option for example. In recent years, laser treatment for varicose veins has improved considerably, with newer, more precise lasers now used to target problem areas.

Many treatments are non-invasive, and some can even be carried out in short time and you can return home afterwards. So, rather than suffer in silence, why not book a consultation with our Cornwall vein specialist today. By undergoing treatment now, by the time summer arrives you’ll feel confident enough to bare those pins.

 

Could Centella Asiatica Prevent Varicose Veins?

herbal remedy for varicose veinsIn your search for varicose vein remedies, you’re likely to come across Centella Asiatica. It’s even being dubbed as an anti-ageing super herb which is likely to take the beauty industry by storm this year. While it’s largely being recommended as a remedy for cellulite and anti-aging, the herb is also said to have impressive benefits for those suffering with varicose veins.

So, could Centella Asiatica prevent varicose veins and could it potentially treat the condition?

What is Centella Asiatica?

Centella Asiatica is a flowering herb, consisting of 70% triterpenic acids. It’s native to Asia and is most often used in Myanmar and Sri Lanka cooking. It’s also frequently consumed in tea form in Thailand.

The herb is said to have a staggering 47 proven health benefits, which has led companies to develop all kinds of Centella Asiatica products to combat numerous health and beauty issues.

Could this herbal remedy really help with varicose veins?

The herb is said to potentially minimise varicose veins. It does this by enhancing the structure of the connective tissue, in turn reducing sclerosis and boosting blood flow throughout the legs and other affected areas. As it strengthens the veins, it could also potentially prevent varicose veins from forming.

The trouble is, there is currently no scientific evidence to back up whether or not the herb is effective at combatting varicose veins. So, while it may improve the condition, it isn’t guaranteed and it’s also not going to eliminate varicose veins completely.

Although the herb may not present any side effects in small amounts, trying out the remedy may do more harm than good. That’s because holding off on an actual treatment could cause your varicose veins to worsen.

The importance of seeking proper varicose vein treatment

While opting for herbal and other natural remedies might seem like a good idea when it comes to achieving effective and long-term management and treatment of varicose veins it is always best to choose a vein specialist.

Varicose veins are commonly thought of as a purely unsightly, cosmetic issue. However, evidence suggests when left untreated, varicose veins can worsen over time and lead to potentially dangerous health issues. In severe cases, if blood clots form and move up to the heart, they could prove lethal.

So, if you really want to banish varicose veins, it’s a much better idea to seek proper, medical treatment. There are an outstanding number of treatments available these days and some are much less invasive than you might think.

Flying When You Have Varicose Veins – Everything You Need to Know

varicose veins and flyingWhat better way to beat those January blues than to book a faraway holiday? However, if you are planning on flying this year, you might want to get your varicose veins treated first.

There have been cases where people flying for long periods of time with varicose veins, have developed pretty serious blood clots. If left untreated, these can become potentially deadly. So, it’s certainly safer to have the veins treated prior to flying. However, if you don’t have time to seek treatment before you jet off, there are a few tips you can follow to reduce the risks.

What are the risks of flying with varicose veins?

Provided precautionary measures are taken, flying with varicose veins isn’t generally considered dangerous. However, there are some potential dangers and symptoms you should be aware of.

Most commonly, flying with varicose veins can lead to numbness in the legs, aches, itching, pains and burning. There’s also a chance that ulcers could develop, and in more severe cases, blood clots.

The dangers of flying with varicose veins increase however, if you’ve also been diagnosed with a condition known as Deep Vein Thrombosis. This causes blood clots to form within the deeper veins in the legs. When flying, the pressure from the cabin can cause these blood clots to dislodge themselves and travel up to the body. If they travel up to the heart, it could prove fatal.

So, if you do have Deep Vein Thrombosis, it’s highly recommended you seek advice from a doctor prior to flying.

Precautionary measures you can take

If you want to ensure you’re safe from the potential dangers varicose veins pose while flying, the good news is there’s a number of preventative measures you can take.

Compression stockings are great at protecting the legs against the pressure changes in the cabin. If you’re taking a particularly long flight, they can really help to lower your chances of developing blood clots. You’ll also want to ensure you drink plenty of water. This helps to regulate blood flow and pressure. Also, dehydration is known to worsen the symptoms of varicose veins, so staying hydrated is one of the best tips you can follow.

Finally, try to move around as much as you can, especially on long flights. Getting up and walking around for a few minutes will help to get the blood flowing correctly and prevent potential clots from forming.

Of course, the best thing to do to prevent varicose veins posing a problem whilst flying, is to have them treated. Although they’re often seen as purely a cosmetic issue, they can in fact become problematic and potentially dangerous over time. There’s so many different treatments available these days, including great non-invasive procedures. So, if there’s time before you are due to fly, book a consultation with a vein specialist and seek to get the problem treated.

Cyanoacrylate Glue Occlusion – The Latest Varicose Vein Treatment

Varicose vein treatments have come a long way over the past decade or so. While vein stripping used to be pretty much the only treatment option available, these days varicose veins can be treated with numerous types of procedures, many of which are non-invasive. New treatments are consistently being added onto the market, giving patients more options than ever before.

One of the newest treatments available is Cyanoacrylate glue occlusion. Here, you’ll discover more about this revolutionary procedure and how it could help banish your varicose vein issues once and for all.

What is Cyanoacrylate glue occlusion?

Cyanoacrylate glue occlusion is a new, keyhole procedure performed under local anaesthetic. It basically sticks the wall of the varicose vein together, shutting it down completely.

Once the glue has been inserted into the vein via a catheter, it begins to harden and will gradually be absorbed by the body. Once the varicose vein is closed, it allows the blood to re-direct to healthier veins, preventing the condition from worsening.

What sets this treatment apart, is the fact it doesn’t require a large amount of anaesthesia to be administered, or a Regional Nerve Block. It’s minimally invasive and is performed on a walk-in, walk-out basis.

How effective is the procedure?

According to the minimal studies carried out to measure the effectiveness of Cyanoacrylate glue occlusion, it’s estimated to work approximately 98.9% of the time. It’s also shown to produce less complications than surgery or EVLA treatment. However, as it’s a new treatment, there hasn’t been enough research conducted yet to determine how well it works compared to other treatment options.

Like all treatments, Cyanoacrylate glue occlusion won’t be suitable for all patients. So, you will need a consultation with one of our varicose vein expert surgeons to determine whether this would be the best treatment method for you.

Are there any risks involved?

There are some risks and complications associated with this procedure, though they are fairly minimal.

Like all keyhole procedures, Cyanoacrylate glue occlusion could cause bruising, nerve injury, skin discolouration, an allergic reaction or deep vein thrombosis. It’s important to be aware of these risks before you agree to undergo the procedure.

Out of all of the varicose vein treatments we offer here at the Cornwall Vein Clinic, Cyanoacrylate glue occlusion is definitely one of the most effective non-invasive procedures available. However, we advise you to book a consultation to assess the condition and discover whether this would be the best procedure to treat it.

How Do New EVLA Treatments perform in the Treatment of Varicose Veins?

Laser treatments for varicose veins have proven really effective over the years, but they have been known to be quite uncomfortable and sometimes even painful, in the past. However, thanks to advancements in technology, newer EVLA treatments are now practically painless and offer much more precise results.

Here, we’ll look at the newer EVLA treatments and how they stack up against other treatment methods.

What can you expect from new EVLA treatments?

The difference between the newer EVLA treatments and the older ones is that the new procedure uses a completely different wavelength. It is this which makes the procedure less painful and more effective.

Even complex varicose veins can be effectively targeted by the laser, and its results are comparable to those received through the VNUS closure method. EVLA is one of the National Institute for Clinical Excellence’s recommended treatment options. It’s minimally invasive and is usually performed under local anaesthetic.

How does it compare to other treatments?

The newer EVLA treatment is considered one of the best, most effective procedures in the treatment of varicose veins. However, like all treatments, it won’t be suitable for everyone.

As mentioned above, it provides the same kind of results as the VNUS closure procedure. However, as it’s less invasive, it presents far fewer complications. It can also be performed as a walk-in, walk-out procedure and you’ll experience far less pain than surgery. The recovery time is also much shorter.

So, EVLA is just as good, and potentially better than other varicose vein treatments.

Are there any risks or complications?

Although the newest EVLA treatments are less painful and much more precise, there are still a few risks and complications associated with the procedure.

There’s a possibility the procedure won’t work, although this is said to only occur in about 3% of patients. You may also experience some bruising and tenderness after the treatment. Another side effect which around 1% of patients can experience is numbness in the leg. However, this is very rare and it’s also usually only temporary.

You can find out more about our newest EVLA treatment and its potential side effects, by booking a consultation with the Cornwall Vein Clinic today.

Could Venous Disease Lead to Restless Leg Syndrome?

restless leg syndromeVenous disease is largely seen as a cosmetic issue. However, it’s known to lead to potentially serious complications along with nasty side effects, if it isn’t treated. One condition that’s been linked to venous disease which you might not be aware of, is restless leg syndrome.

The condition causes an uncomfortable sensation within the legs during the night. This in turn makes it difficult to sleep. Here, we’ll look at the link between venous disease and restless leg syndrome and the treatment options available.

The link between venous disease and restless leg syndrome

Venous disease has been linked to restless leg syndrome, particularly varicose veins. It is thought the heaviness, discomfort and the pain caused by varicose veins can trigger restless leg syndrome.

However, it isn’t just varicose veins which can lead to the condition. Venous disease isn’t always visible. This can make it difficult to diagnose. In fact, venous disease is one of the most undiagnosed conditions in the UK. Therefore, it’s vital to understand the symptoms so you can ensure you receive the right treatment.

Understanding the symptoms of restless leg syndrome

If you’re suffering from restless leg syndrome, you’re likely to experience an extremely uncomfortable sensation, mainly in the legs. You’ll feel an urge to move the legs whenever you’re lying down or sitting still. This typically prevents you from relaxing and getting to sleep.

The symptoms of venous disease can be a little trickier to diagnose. Varicose and spider veins are the easiest symptom to identify. However, you may also notice skin changes, swelling, pain, and in rare cases, ulcers.

How can restless leg syndrome be treated?

If you think your restless leg syndrome may be caused by venous disease, it’s important to seek treatment as early as possible. You’ll first need to receive a proper diagnosis to establish the exact cause. If it is discovered the condition was triggered by venous disease, you will need to seek treatment from a specialist vein clinic.

There are a lot of different types of treatments available for venous disease. If you have varicose veins, you could need laser treatment, injections or even a glue-based treatment. The earlier you seek treatment, the less invasive the procedure will typically be.

Understanding the link between restless leg syndrome and venous disease is vital in its diagnosis. It also gives you the opportunity to treat venous disease before it develops into restless leg syndrome.

Understanding Varicose Veins in Younger Patients

varicose veins in younger patientsVaricose veins are typically associated with old age. However, the truth is they can strike at any age, including in those who are 30 or younger. It could be that you’re genetically more likely to develop varicose veins, or they could develop due to pregnancy or down to numerous lifestyle factors.

Here, we’ll look at why varicose veins are becoming more prevalent in younger patients and what can be done to combat them.

More younger people than ever before are developing varicose veins

While young people have never been immune to developing varicose veins, there does appear to have been an increase in recent years, in the number affected by the condition. Some experts believe this is down to younger people leading a much more sedentary lifestyle.

In a digital age where younger people now spend a lot of time staring at smartphones and watching TV box sets, it has resulted in many developing conditions usually associated with old age. Lack of activity and sitting for long periods of time can contribute towards the development of varicose veins.

It isn’t just varicose veins younger people are starting to develop. Medical professionals have also seen an increase in the number of younger patients seeking treatment for back pain and knee pain, along with haemorrhoids.

Prevention and treatment of varicose veins

While genetic cases of varicose veins in younger patients cannot be prevented, the majority could be. The key is to stay as active as possible. Limit the amount of time you spend sat or standing in one place. Ensuring you exercise regularly and eat a healthy diet will also help to prevent them.

If you do develop varicose veins, it’s beneficial to get them treated as quickly as possible. This will stop them from worsening over time. It will also prevent the need for more invasive treatments. The earlier varicose veins are diagnosed and treated, the less invasive the treatment will need to be.

Overall, varicose veins are becoming more frequent in younger patients so it’s important to recognise the signs. If you suspect you are suffering with the condition, you should speak to your doctor or attend a specialist vein clinic for a consultation.  Varicose veins may seem like solely a cosmetic issue, but if left untreated they can actually go on to develop into a more serious condition.

Exercising in vein? Is exercise good for varicose veins?

exercise and varicose veinsVaricose veins are a common condition in UK adults and are thought to present in one in three individuals to some degree. Although it’s often thought of as a health concern that only affects the elderly, many young men and women can also suffer from this unsightly and often uncomfortable problem.

There are many myths and misconceptions about what can cause varicose veins and, although some factors are proven, such as a genetic predisposition or pregnancy, others are less clear-cut. One common concern of patients visiting our Cornwall Vein Clinic is whether exercise caused their varicose veins?

Does exercise cause varicose veins?

Patients have often seen pictures of athletes with bulging veins and think that exercise could have been the cause of their own vein problems, but all the evidence suggests that exercise will not cause varicose veins. The enlarged veins sported by athletes are a combination of less subcutaneous fat present in the arms and legs and veins that have dilated due to the increased demands from the muscles.

The bad news is that though exercise doesn’t cause varicose veins and will strengthen the calf muscles that help pump blood back up to the heart, it also doesn’t protect you from them developing them entirely.

Exercising with varicose veins

Another common question we receive is whether it’s safe to continue exercising once you’ve developed varicose veins. The condition occurs when the valves malfunction and blood flows the wrong way through the veins. During heavy exercise, the amount of blood pumping through the veins increases greatly and damaged veins may not be able to deal will this as easily as they could before.

Particular forms of exercise, such as running and cycling, demand more from our legs, so it might be time to swap the gym for the pool. Although blood flow to the legs increases as with other sporting activities, the legs are supported by the water and also elevated which minimises the effects of gravity.

If you want to continue running or cycling, then it might be time to invest in some compression stockings which squeeze the calf and prevent blood pooling in the lower extremities.

The benefits of exercise for your overall health mean it is essential that you don’t let varicose veins prevent you from keeping fit and active. For advice on how to manage your existing condition or to find out more about your varicose vein treatment options, call 01872 308 520 to arrange a consultation.

The importance of seeking a correct varicose vein diagnosis and treatment

Although not typically considered to be a medically threatening condition, varicose veins do have the potential to lead to severe health problems. If you think you’re suffering from varicose veins, therefore, it’s vital you seek correct diagnosis and treatment.

If caught early enough, the majority of varicose veins can be treated with simple, non-invasive procedures. However, as some patients have sadly discovered, seeking treatment in the wrong places can lead to severe complications. Here, we’ll look at why it’s so important to seek a professional diagnosis and what can happen if you choose the wrong practitioner to treat the condition.

The importance of seeking a correct varicose veins diagnosis

Varicose veins vary greatly in severity and can be caused by numerous factors. Therefore, it is important to seek a diagnosis from a vein specialist to determine the best course of treatment going forward.

Those with mild to moderate varicose veins, for example, should find a non-invasive treatment will be enough to clear up the problem. However, if the condition is severe and the patient has left it too late before having the problem diagnosed, surgery may be the only viable option available.

It has recently been in the news that some GPs are now starting to offer varicose vein diagnosis and treatments. However, worryingly many of them have not undergone adequate training. This means patients could end up receiving not only a wrong diagnosis but the wrong type of treatment too.

What could go wrong if incorrect treatment is sought?

If incorrect treatment is sought, the least that could happen is it simply won’t fix the issue. However, the worst that could happen is the condition could be made worse, or it could lead to severe complications.

It isn’t just the wrong type of treatment patients needs to be wary of. The person carrying out the procedure should also be extensively trained and experienced in performing varicose vein treatments.

Overall, while varicose veins are mainly a cosmetic issue to start with, they can develop into much more serious conditions. Seeking the correct treatment and an accurate diagnosis are crucial. If you’re looking to treat your varicose veins, it’s therefore important to ensure you’re choosing a reliable and experienced varicose vein specialist.