Varicose veins look like blue or purple ropes winding their way around your calves and ankles. If you like wearing shorts and skirts, this can be problematic; the veins can be unsightly and make you self-conscious. You also have to worry if your varicose veins can lead to more serious issues.
At Apex Endovascular, located in Fort Collins, Colorado, Dr. Shawn Ahmed provides a range of interventional vascular care to treat varicose veins. We also deliver vascular health support and education to help you prevent varicose veins.
Varicose veins are often products of chronic venous insufficiency (CVI); blood stops flowing one-way along approved routes and starts pooling up behind damaged valves. This causes the veins to bulge, stand out under the skin, and even become deformed and misshapen.
Some people report that their varicose veins cause generalized pain in their calves or symptoms like itching, aching, or heaviness. Others experience individualized pain symptoms related to one or more specific veins.
If your varicose veins aren’t treated, you can end up with more problems; CVI and varicose veins may lead to deep vein thrombosis, or DVT. Blood pooled behind a faulty valve in a deep leg vein can clot, and if a clot breaks free and starts to travel, it’s called an embolism.
When an embolism gets stuck in your lungs, brain, or heart, it can cause a fatal event. That’s why it’s so important to reduce your risk for varicose veins, if possible, and seek treatment if any do appear.
Most of the things you can do to reduce your risk for varicose veins are lifestyle-related, meaning you can help prevent varicose veins from forming by following these steps:
Extra weight puts more stress on the veins in your legs, making it harder for them to push blood back to your heart. Keeping a healthy weight can help you maintain your vein health.
You don’t have to suddenly become a bodybuilder or champion tennis player. Just try to move more. Even a short walk every day can help circulation and improve vascular health.
If you sit a lot, for work or leisure, try to prop your feet up so the chair doesn’t dig into the backs of your thighs and compromise blood flow. Likewise, don’t sit with your legs crossed.
Those skin-tight jeans or leggings may look great but they, too, can cause reduction of blood flow to your lower legs and problems with your veins. Limit wearing of such attire to events only lasting a few hours, then change into something looser.
Dr. Ahmed can use several different treatment options to deal with varicose veins before they cause major health issues. Most work by closing off damaged veins and diverting blood flow to nearby healthy veins:
Worried about your risk for varicose veins? Give us a call at 970-508-8439, or book a consultation online today.