Varicose veins are a common, especially among older people. They often cause embarrassment and uncomfortable symptoms. However, you may also wonder whether varicose veins are dangerous to your health. Below is some information to help you understand this condition and its implications.
What Are Varicose Veins?
Varicose veins are gnarled, enlarged veins that most commonly appear on the legs. They may be blue, red or purple in color, and they are often swollen and raised above the surface of the skin. Alternatively, varicose veins may be located deep within the tissues.
In addition to their appearance, varicose veins may also cause uncomfortable symptoms, such as cramping, tingling, burning, weakness, and numbness.
Varicose veins can pose more serious health concerns if they are left untreated. Some of the health concerns related to varicose veins include:
- Superficial thrombophlebitis – Superficial thrombophlebitis is a condition that occurs when the veins just below the skin’s surface become inflamed. This condition typically develops because of decreased blood flow and the weakening of the veins.
- Spontaneous bleeding – Over time, varicose veins break down your tissues, bringing themselves closer to the surface of the skin. If the veins are close enough, a small scratch can cause excessive bleeding.
- Venous leg ulcer – Very severe varicose veins can sometimes cause the skin to ulcerate, making you vulnerable to bleeding and infection.
- Lipodermatosclerosis – If your tissues remain inflamed for an extended period of time, you may develop lipodermatosclerosis. This may cause your legs to become more difficult to move. They may also be tender.
- Hyperpigmentation – If you have untreated varicose veins, your skin may become discolored.
If you think you may have varicose veins, you need to address the issue as soon as possible. Please contact Vascular Med Centers today to learn about the various varicose vein treatments available to people with this condition.