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Are My Varicose Veins Dangerous to My Health?

 Are My Varicose Veins Dangerous to My Health?

Varicose veins are large, twisting, and unsightly, and while they’re rarely life-threatening, they can be a sign of compromised vascular health. 

The cosmetic appearance of varicose veins is often the main concern for people with these noticeable veins, and while that’s understandable, your overall vascular health is important too. 

At Surgical Care East, located in Camillus, New York and serving the broader Syracuse area, vascular surgeon Dennis Resetarits, MD, wants patients to better understand the connection between varicose veins and vascular health. 

Addressing your varicose veins with available treatments not only eliminates your varicose veins, but also improves your vascular health. 

What are varicose veins

Varicose veins may be a sign of a circulatory problem. They develop when blood vessel walls become weak, causing blood vessels to enlarge. 

Because this most often occurs in veins close to the surface of the skin, varicose veins have a characteristic appearance of being large and ropelike. They also tend to appear purple or blue and commonly affect the legs. 

If you have varicose veins, you may feel self-conscious about your legs and take steps to avoid clothing that shows your legs. 

Connection between varicose veins and vascular health

Most varicose veins are not dangerous, but they can cause leg swelling, itching, and discomfort, and there’s a connection between varicose veins and vascular health.

Vascular disease is an abnormality or dysfunction in the vascular system tasked with circulating blood throughout your body. 

Varicose veins appear when the one-way valves designed to keep blood flowing in one direction back to the heart don’t work as well as they should, allowing blood to pool in the veins. 

The accumulated blood places added force against your vein walls, causing them to weaken, giving way to twisted, bulging veins. 

Left untreated, varicose veins may cause complications such as open sores (ulcers) that heal slowly, blood clots, bleeding, and infections. 

Varicose veins and other vascular disease

If you have varicose veins, it’s wise to meet with Dr. Resetarits so he can assess your vascular health. Varicose veins are associated with other vascular diseases, including:.

Peripheral artery disease

Peripheral artery disease (PAD) is a circulatory problem in which narrowed arteries reduce blood flow to your legs and arms. Leg pain when walking or upon exertion is a common symptom. A buildup of fatty substances in the arteries is the most common cause of peripheral artery disease. 

Deep vein thrombosis

In DVT, a blood clot forms in the deep veins buried within the legs. Extended periods of inactivity, such as sitting on a long plane ride or recovering in bed after a medical procedure are major risk factors. People with varicose veins may be at a higher risk of DVT. 

Chronic venous insufficiency

Damaged vein valves in the legs are behind chronic venous insufficiency (CVI). Varicose veins are often a sign of CVI. 

Chronic venous insufficiency occurs when dysfunctional vein valves prevent blood from flowing back to the heart efficiently. As a result, blood pools in the veins and causes such symptoms as leg pain, swelling, and leg ulcers. 

See a vein specialist

If you have varicose veins, Dr. Resetarits and our team at Surgical Care East have several approaches available to close off bad veins and improve your vascular health. Available treatments include:

Each of these treatments addresses varicose veins at the source by causing them to collapse. Your body then absorbs the bad vein and reroutes blood flow to healthier veins, resulting in improved vascular health. 

If you have varicose veins, we can evaluate your vascular health, treat your bad veins, and get you on the path to improved vascular health. 

To learn more about varicose vein treatment, we invite you to reach out to our knowledgeable and friendly team by calling our Camillus, New York, office or booking your request online.

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