Varicose and Spider Veins

Venous insufficiency and varicose veins are not well understood by most physicians.  The etiology is varicose veins is usually linked to an underlying valve problem, whether its in the deep or superficial venous system.  Essentially all vein blood in the legs is supposed to move up towards the body.  Unfortunately, since we stand or sit most of the day, gravity is always fighting us and trying to pull vein blood back down towards the ankles.  There are one way valves in the deep and superficial veins that normally close and prevent the backward flow of vein blood.  When those valves are not working well, blood tends to back up the veins and cause dilatation of the veins.  Over time, this leads to permanent damage to the vein wall, due to loss of elasticity.  As a result, varicose veins develop.  Typically, the valve problem is in the superficial venous system.  Symptoms of venous insufficiency include varicose veins, swelling, pain and a dull heaviness of the legs, skin discoloration, and in severe cases ulceration of the legs, typically at the ankles


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