Vein disease can be painful. It also can be dangerous to your health.
That’s why treatment by a qualified physician and healthcare provider is important, especially in the early stages.
What is Vein Disease?
Medically speaking, it’s called Chronic Venous Insufficiency – and it involves a spectrum of vein issues that affect more than half of the American adult population.
Valves in the leg veins don’t work properly, and lead to pooling of blood in your lower extremities. Eventually, pressure in the legs start a sequence of complications that include:
Dr. Gaston Dana of the JMH Wound Healing Center explains more about Vein Disease.
What Happens When You Have Venous Insufficiency?
In order to understand Venous Insufficiency, it is important to be familiar with the circulatory system within the human body. Blood Is carried throughout the body in a network of arteries and veins, which together make up the circulatory system. Arteries carry fresh blood from the heart to tissue, Including the lower legs and feet. This fresh blood provides these tissues with the oxygen and nutrients needed to keep them healthy. Veins carry the used blood back to the heart so that it may pick up more nutrients and circulate again.
The arteries are thick and help the heart to pump the blood by contracting. The walls of the veins are thin and have small valves in them, which open to allow the blood to flow through, and then close, after each heartbeat, to prevent the blood from rushing backward.
Venous Insufficiency occurs when these veins and their valves become damaged. This prevents the blood from properly flowing from the feel, up the leg, to the heart. The system becomes backed up, causing the blood end fluid to be trapped in the feet, ankles and lower legs, which results in swelling of these areas.
Along with chronic swelling, there are other complications associated with Venous Insufficiency. Skin problems such as weeping of fluid, itching, hardened reddish/brown skin and a rash may be present. Painful, irregularly shaped wounds located Just above the ankle, and throbbing in the lower legs at night are other signs that the venous system has been damaged.What are the Symptoms?
What are the Types of Vein Disease?
Spider Veins and Reticular Veins
These veins are superficial and the least severe. Thought normally harmless, they may be an early sign of more advanced vein disease.
Dilated veins can be swollen, ropey and painful. Varicose veins case lead to progressive problems such as:
What are Venous Stasis Ulcers?
These are wounds located between the ankle and the calf that are caused by the failure of the veins to move blood back to the heart normally.
Venous Stasis is caused by damaged veins in the legs and that allow blood to pool in the lower leg. This causes the leg to swell and the skin to stretch like an oversized balloon. The skin breaks open and wounds form. Changes in the skin color and texture may result.
What are the Risk Factors?
Veins and their valves become damaged due to various reasons.
Approximately 10 to 15 percent of men and 30 percent of women have visible varicose veins on their legs. Venous Insufficiency often occurs in middle aged and older adults. It can be Inherited, but often It is due to lifestyle factors including:
40 million people in the United States suffer from varicose veins.
40% of people in the United States have chronic venous insufficiency.
30% percent of the population suffer from varicose veins.
80% of varicose veins are responsible for leg ulcers.
50% of varicose vein patients have a family history of varicose veins.
90% chance of developing varicose veins if both of your parents have them.
55% percent of varicose vein sufferers are women.
The Johnson Memorial Wound Healing Center Vein Disease Team is led by:
Dr. Daniel LeGrand, M.D.
Dr. Gaston Dana, D.O.
Dr. Daniel LeGrand talks about the JMH Wound Healing Center.
What Should You Expect During Your First Visit?
What Are the Treatment Options?
The Wound Healing Center at Johnson Memorial Health has one of the most comprehensive programs in Indiana.
The treatment approach can include:
If needed, our physicians perform the endovenous ablation procedure to remove the vein that is of concern. This technique has been shown to be superior to vein stripping with less postoperative pain, less analgesic use and shorter time for sick leave. (Insurance companies require steps 1-3 to be completed before authorizing any procedure.)