diet and varicose veins

Eating your way to better vein health

While varicose veins aren’t always preventable, there are ways to lower the risk. One way to protect yourself against vascular disease is to pay attention to your diet.

Here, we’ll look at how what you eat can impact vein health and the top foods you can add to your daily diet to reduce the risk of vein troubles.

The role of antioxidants in vein health

Oxidation can prove problematic for the veins. When molecules and oxygen mix in the body, it causes the function and structure of the molecules to change. This can lead to the development of free radicals, which can encourage plaque rupture, blood clots and atherosclerosis.

Antioxidants are used to fight off free radicals in the body. So, by eating a diet rich in antioxidants, you can reduce these risks to vein health.

Could the Mediterranean Diet be key?

The Mediterranean Diet has long been advertised for its health benefits. Due to its high antioxidant content, it’s unsurprising that it is often recommended for enhanced vein health.

Skinless poultry, fish, whole grains, vegetables and low-fat dairy are the main staples of the diet. Although it can’t guarantee you won’t develop varicose veins if you follow it, the diet certainly has vein health benefits that can’t be ignored.

What foods should varicose vein sufferers avoid?

When overhauling your diet, it’s not just a case of what you should eat for better vein health, but also which food groups to avoid. Refined carbs should be avoided and you should opt for complex carbohydrates such as brown rice and oats. Regular alcohol consumption can contribute to the formation and worsening of varicose veins. Foods that are high in sodium should also be limited as high levels of sodium in the blood causes the body to retain more water, putting more pressure on the veins.

Seeking treatment for varicose veins

While increasing the amount of antioxidant-rich foods in your diet can help reduce the chances of developing venous disease, it doesn’t eliminate the risk entirely. If you do suspect you have varicose veins, it’s important to seek treatment.

It’s also important to note that you can’t use a healthy diet to eliminate varicose veins if they do develop. It may be used as a preventative measure, but it won’t clear up existing venous disease issues.

There are a lot of effective varicose vein treatments out there. Some are even minimally invasive, capable of being carried out in your lunch hour. The earlier you get them treated, the less invasive the treatment will need to be. Venous disease worsens if it is left untreated so seeking a diagnosis and treatment plan early will prevent further issues caused by the condition. For more advice on the management and treatment of varicose veins, call 01872 308 520 to book a consultation at the Cornwall Vein Clinic.

varicose vein treatment timing

Knowing when is the right time to treat varicose veins

Do you suffer from varicose veins? Often considered a merely cosmetic issue, it’s common for patients to hold off seeking treatment. However, what many don’t realise is that varicose veins often become worse if they aren’t treated. For many men and women, venous disease will continue to progress over time, often leading to unpleasant symptoms.

Here, we’ll look at some of the most common varicose vein symptoms that could be telling you it’s time to seek advice from a varicose vein specialist.

There is a change in the aesthetics of the leg

One of the key signs it’s time to treat your varicose veins is if you start to notice aesthetic changes to the veins and/or leg. It could be that the veins have started to bulge out more, the colour of the surrounding skin has changed, or the skin may have become cracked and dry.

Any changes in the appearance of the veins or the skin should be looked into. So, keep an eye on the aesthetics and seek treatment if things do start to change.

Your legs are becoming tired and sore

Many people mistakenly think that varicose veins are just a cosmetic issue. However, they can become painful. You may find your legs start to ache and feel sore after walking. You may also notice they become a lot more tired over time.

If varicose veins are causing you any discomfort, that alone is a sign that they need to be treated.

Development of ulcers

One of the more serious complications to watch out for is the development of ulcers. These tend to occur during the more advanced stages of the condition. You’ll find they most commonly develop around the ankles and they take a long time to heal. Once you start to develop them, you’ll also find they re-occur frequently too.

These are just some of the signs it’s time to treat those varicose veins. However, even with no symptoms, it’s still important to seek treatment. This is because venous disease worsens if it isn’t treated. So, while you may not have any current symptoms, if you leave it too long, you’ll start to develop them.

There are so many great treatment options available these days, so why put up with varicose veins when they can be easily eliminated? Book a consultation today at Cornwall Vein Clinic and discover which treatment option would work best for you. Call 01872 308 520 to book an appointment.

dangerous varicose veins

How to Spot Potentially Dangerous Varicose Veins

Our veins play a crucial role in our health. However, like all parts of the body, they can develop numerous issues in their lifetime. Varicose veins are a very common, yet embarrassing condition which is largely associated as a cosmetic issue. However, if left untreated, they can also become potentially dangerous.

So, how do you know whether you have dangerous varicose veins? Here, you’ll discover how to spot them and when to get them treated.

Symptoms of potentially dangerous varicose veins

Most varicose veins are harmless, although if left they do have the potential to turn dangerous. The good news is, there are numerous symptoms you can watch out for to determine whether you need to seek immediate treatment.

The most common signs your varicose veins may be dangerous include:

  • If there is pain or swelling in and around the vein
  • Redness/discolouration around the area
  • Aching or throbbing in the affected area

While these symptoms don’t necessarily point to your varicose veins being dangerous, they can be a sign to watch out for. At the very least, these symptoms make life so much more unpleasant when you’re dealing with them on a daily basis.

The importance of seeking a diagnosis

Regardless of whether or not you experience the symptoms above, if you suspect you have varicose veins it is crucial to have them assessed. Booking a consultation with a vein specialist can help identify varicose veins and the best course of treatment.

All varicose veins have the potential to turn dangerous. So, it makes sense to have them treated as quickly as possible. That way, you’ll rectify the problem before it has a chance to negatively impact your health. The earlier you seek help for your veins, the less invasive the treatment is going to be too.

Understanding your treatment options

To prevent varicose veins becoming a more serious issue, having them treated is highly recommend. There are a lot of different treatments available these days including Endovenous Laser Ablation, VNUS Closure and Ultrasound-guided sclerotherapy treatment.

At your consultation, you will be advised which type of treatment will work best for you. You may just be surprised by how fast and painless these treatments can be. So, if you’re concerned about your varicose veins, book a consultation at the Cornwall Vein Clinic today.

varicose veins in the hands

Treating Varicose Veins in the Hands: Everything You Need to Know

Varicose veins are most common in the legs. However, did you know they can also occur on other parts of the body such as the hands?

If you’re suffering from varicose veins in the hands, you may be wondering how it can be treated. Unlike in the legs, it’s a little harder to cover up the hands. However, there are ways to eliminate them.

Here, you’ll discover everything you need to know about varicose veins situated within the hands and the treatment options available.

Understanding hand veins

As we age, our hands are one of the first parts of the body to show the signs. As the skin starts to lose its elasticity and become thinner, you’ll start to notice lines, discolouration and more prominent veins in the hands.

While hand veins are natural, there are times when they may be linked to an underlying condition, such as varicose veins. This is largely a cosmetic issue, although it can lead to more serious health problems if left untreated.

Symptoms of varicose veins in the hands

So, how can you tell if you have varicose veins in your hands? Well, the most obvious sign is bulging veins. If they appear larger than normal and are very prominent, it could be a symptom of varicose veins.

Varicose veins also tend to ache and swell a little. However, again this is more common in the legs. If the veins aren’t pronounced and they are simply a bluish colour under the skin, this is more likely to be a natural sign of ageing rather than varicose veins.

As there are very few symptoms associated with varicose veins in the hands, it is a good idea to undergo a consultation. A vein specialist will be able to assess the vein to determine whether venous disease is the culprit.

Treatment options available

If you are found to have varicose veins in the hands, there are numerous treatment options available. It could be as simple as undergoing injection or laser treatments. These aren’t invasive treatments and they can be carried out quickly.

The earlier you seek treatment, the less invasive it will also be. So, if you suspect you are suffering from varicose veins in the hands, we recommend booking a consultation. Once a diagnosis has been made, an effective treatment plan can be created to eliminate the issue quickly and painlessly.

can varicose veins be treated when you're pregnant

Can You Treat Varicose Veins During Pregnancy?

Varicose veins can present at any time, but did you know there is an increased chance of developing them during pregnancy? Many pregnant women suffer from varicose veins, which can be really uncomfortable on top of the other common pregnancy symptoms.

The question is, if you develop varicose veins during pregnancy, can they be treated? Here, you’ll discover everything you need to know.

Why do varicose veins occur during pregnancy?

During pregnancy, the body starts to produce extra blood to support both you and baby. However, this additional blood puts extra pressure onto the veins, particularly the ones in your legs.

Combined with the effects of progesterone which relaxes the vessels, and the additional weight gained during pregnancy, this can lead to varicose veins.

Can you treat them while you’re pregnant?

If you do develop varicose veins during pregnancy, the good news is they will usually reduce after you’ve given birth. There are a few things you can try to minimise them during the pregnancy, but you’ll need to avoid invasive treatments until after the pregnancy.

Making sure you get the blood moving and you wear comfortable clothing are just two ways you can treat varicose veins during pregnancy. Gentle exercise will keep the blood moving, preventing it from pooling in the veins. It also helps to prevent too much weight gain which is another contributing factor.

Of course, you could also wear compression stockings for support during the pregnancy too. These are some of the main ways to treat varicose veins while you’re expecting.

Preventing pregnancy-related varicose veins

Unfortunately, there is no set way to prevent varicose veins in pregnancy. Avoiding putting on too much weight and wearing compression stockings are two of the best potential prevention methods for varicose veins. However, it isn’t always possible to prevent them.

If you do suffer from varicose veins when you’re pregnant, they should disappear by themselves after the pregnancy. However, if they don’t you should book a consultation with a vein expert to treat the condition before it progresses.

symptoms of varicose veins

Your New Year Resolution: better vein health

Statistics vary, but some estimate that up to 80% of us make and fail to follow through on our New Year’s Resolutions, abandoning them before the end of January. However, if you’re legs are aching, feel ‘heavy’ and look less than attractive with bulging, swollen varicose veins, make 2020 the year that you seek better vein health.

A new year is an opportunity to embrace a healthier lifestyle and this can fit well with a commitment to sorting out your varicose veins. There are a number of lifestyle changes you can adopt that can help reduce the symptoms of varicose veins.

5 steps to better vein health:

  1. Eat a healthy diet: certain nutrients can help keep your veins strong and elastic and so fill your plate with colourful fruit and vegetables. They are packed with bioflavonoids that have potent antioxidant and anti-inflammatory qualities. They diminish swelling and strengthen collagen which is the connective tissue in the vein walls.
  2. Swap alcohol for water: although drinking alcohol doesn’t cause varicose veins to develop, it can make an existing vascular condition worse because excessive drinking increases your heart rate, causing blood to pump through your veins even faster. This places stress on the compromised veins in your legs. Drink water instead as it helps to improve vein health by both improving overall blood circulation and strengthening the muscles that support your veins.
  3. Cut out salt: foods that are high in sodium cause the body to retain fluid which can increase trauma to your already damaged veins.
  4. Get active: embracing exercise is a common New Year’s Resolution and no wonder: the health benefits are myriad. In terms of better vein health, regular exercise encourages better circulation that helps to push through any blood that has collected in the veins. It also helps to lower your blood pressure which can be another contributing factor in the development of varicose veins.
  5. Quit smoking: it’s no secret that smoking is hugely damaging to your health, but it also makes you far more susceptible to developing varicose veins. Nicotine, as well as the other 7,000 plus chemicals in cigarettes, causes constriction of your veins, restricting blood flow.

Although these lifestyle changes can often help to prevent varicose veins from worsening, they do not usually address the underlying condition. If you are bothered about the cosmetic appearance of your legs or struggling with the associated symptoms, varicose vein removal no longer involves surgery and significant downtime. There are a number of procedures that are highly effective and minimally invasive. Please call 01872 308 520 to arrange a consultation at the Cornwall Vein Clinic.

varicose vein treatments assessed

Laser Treatment vs Foam Sclerotherapy

New research has looked into the effectiveness of three varicose vein treatments. The multicentre study published in the New England Journal of Medicine, assessed endovenous laser abrasion, foam sclerotherapy and surgery. It was discovered that both laser treatment and surgery were the most effective in terms of improvements within quality of life.

Here, we’ll look at the results of the study and the different procedures available.

What did the study reveal?

The study assessed 798 varicose vein patients from 11 different clinics across the UK. The randomised trial looked at the quality of life outcome after five years, alongside cost-effectiveness and disease-specific outcomes.

A total of 595 patients completed a quality of life survey. It was revealed that patients who underwent laser treatment and surgery reported a better quality of life score. However, generic quality of life was marked as being improved for all three treatment options.

All three treatments were also discovered to have very similar recurrence rates. So, in terms of effectiveness, they were all close to one another. Just 11% of patients who underwent laser abrasion needed additional treatment. Just 7% of those who underwent surgery required additional treatment, while 14% of foam sclerotherapy patients required further treatment.

Understanding your varicose vein treatment options

This new study shows just how effective the main varicose treatment options can be. While laser treatment and surgery were shown to have the highest quality of life improvements, foam sclerotherapy is also extremely effective.

The treatment you require to eliminate your varicose veins will depend upon numerous factors. How severe the condition is will be a major deciding factor to the type of treatment you should undergo. This will be discussed with you during your consultation.

Varicose veins can cause a lot of embarrassment and issues with confidence. Many patients are unaware of how simple and effective the treatments can be. To discover which treatment option is right for you, book a consultation with a vein specialist today.

men and varicose veins

Chris Evans Films Varicose Vein Removal

Popular radio host Chris Evans has recently filmed himself getting varicose vein removal treatment. Confessing he’s usually squeamish, the star admitted during the procedure he felt calm despite just being given local anaesthetic.

Commonly, thought of as ‘female-only’ issue, varicose veins can affect men as well and, by openly talking on his radio show and This Morning about the problem, Chris brought some much-needed media attention on how common varicose veins can be. It also highlighted how easily varicose veins can be removed today and the variety of options available.

What did the presenter have done?

Evans underwent ablation where the wall of the vein is damaged, causing it to collapse in on itself. The body then safely absorbs the vein.

After filming the operation being carried out, Evans was seen jogging to the pub. This highlighted how minimally invasive varicose vein removal can be. Many patients return to work or their daily activities right after the procedure.


Understanding varicose vein removal

Varicose vein removal has come a long way since its introduction. The veins were once only treatable via surgery. However, today patients have an extensive range of options open to them.

Laser treatment is one of the most popular options available. Targeting the affected veins, this minimally invasive treatment is virtually painless. There are other alternative non-invasive techniques available too. The treatment approach will be based on the severity of the condition.

The importance of a varicose vein consultation

Before seeking any form of varicose vein treatment, it’s important to book a consultation. You will need to be assessed to determine the severity of the varicose veins. From there, you’ll be presented with the best course of treatment.

It is also important to seek varicose vein treatment as soon as possible. The earlier you get treatment, the less invasive the procedure will be.

It’s great that Chris Evans shared his varicose vein removal experience with his fans. Many patients are put off seeking treatment because they imagine it to be much worse than it actually is. Despite having a lesser common treatment, the star proves varicose vein removal doesn’t have to be a big deal. Call 01872 308 520 to arrange your consultation at the Cornwall Vein Clinic.

risk factors for varicose veins

Could Your Office Job Cause Varicose Veins and Other Worrying Health Issues?

A new study has shown what office workers could look like in 20 years’ time and the results aren’t pretty. The study saw a life-size doll named Emma, created to show what workers would look like in current working conditions.

According to experts, future office workers could end up with a variety of health issues including a protruding tummy, a hunched back and varicose veins.

Report highlights health issues of a poor office set-up

The new report entitled ‘The Work Colleague of the Future’, highlights the issues a poor office set-up will have on employee health. It revealed that a staggering 90% of office workers in the UK are currently suffering from health issues caused by the working environment.

Some of the health conditions found to be plaguing office workers right now include sore eyes, headaches and back pain. These problems were also found to be having an impact on how well the workers can carry out their job.

The findings resulted in Emma, the life-size doll, being created to show how workers would look if changes aren’t made to the working environment. This showed a disturbing change in appearance and a variety of serious health issues like varicose veins.

How to avoid varicose veins and other conditions

While the main changes which need to be made to offices are down to business owners, there are some things workers can do to prevent these worrying health issues.

To avoid the development of varicose veins, for example, office workers should ensure they take regular breaks to walk around and boost the circulation within the legs. Compression socks can also be worn by those who have a sedentary job.

If you already experience tired, aching legs, it’s worth undergoing a consultation to discover whether it’s a symptom of varicose veins. The earlier they are treated, the less invasive the treatment will be. It can also prevent the varicose veins from worsening over time. Call 01872 308 520 to book a consultation today at the Cornwall Vein Clinic and find out which varicose vein treatments are available.

varicose veins and depression

The Link Between Varicose Veins and Depression

Varicose veins are known to lead to numerous physical health issues. However, did you know they can also cause emotional turmoil too?

Several studies have revealed a link between varicose veins and depression. So, how do the two conditions interlink? Below, you’ll discover why many patients also develop depression and other mental health symptoms.

Do varicose veins cause depression?

According to results from several studies, varicose veins can lead to depression in patients. Quality of life surveys have shown that those who suffer from varicose veins without the presence of ulcers have a quality of life score similar to patients who have suffered a hip fracture, stroke or heart attack. When there’s also the presence of ulcers, the scores drop to mirror those who have congestive heart failure.

This shows that varicose veins are far from just a cosmetic issue. The impact they can have on a patient’s life can be dramatic. Many sufferers also avoid social situations, particularly in the summer, due to their unsightly veins.

The level of depression also depends upon the severity of the varicose veins. While some produce no symptoms, others can cause a lot of pain and discomfort. Those who experience more negative side effects are therefore more susceptible to develop depression than those with no negative side effects.

Treatment shown to reduce the symptoms

The good news is, studies have also shown that patients who seek treatment for their varicose veins see an improvement in their quality of life. In many cases, the depressive symptoms ease completely once treatment has been sought.

There are lots of different varicose vein treatments available today. Many of these are also non- or minimally invasive. The earlier treatment is sought, the less invasive the treatment will need to be. Call 01872 308 520 to book a consultation today at the Cornwall Vein Clinic and discover which treatment is right for you.