The problem of varicose veins suffers throughout a person's evolutionary development. Numerous archeological excavations prove this. For example, a mummy was found in Egypt, where his burial took place in the 16th century BC. Traces of varicose veins in the lower extremities and attempts to eliminate it were found. The great scientists of antiquity - Hippocrates and Ibn Sina - worked on the solution of this problem and described it in their works.
In medical terminology, varicose veins are a deep pathology of the blood vessels of the body. The disease is characterized by dysfunction of blood vessels and blood vessels due to physiological changes. In humans, the term "varicose veins" is often associated only with the defeat of the veins of the lower extremities.
This is explained by the fact that the main clinical manifestations of the disease in the form of venous nodules and capillary networks are observed in the thighs, legs or feet. However, the disease often develops in the internal organs.
It is a great misconception that varicose veins are only a gynecological disease. Various sources indicate that every second inhabitant of our planet suffers from various diseases. According to a study conducted in Scotland in the late 90's, pathology was found in almost 40% of women, as in every third man.
Similar studies conducted in our country in the early 2000s showed that 67% of women and one in two men have the disease. And today, doctors note an increase in morbidity among adolescents.
Causes of varicose veins
The main factor in the development of the disease, doctors say, is the failure of venous valves. This is due to a decrease in vascular tone due to an imbalance of collagen in the cells.
Collagen is a protein that forms the basis of connective tissue: cartilage, tendons, blood vessels. This component is responsible for their strength and elasticity. Disruption of the synthesis of this protein in the body leads to disruption of the intercellular structure in tissues and their physiological changes.
As you know, the blood in our body moves in two major circulatory systems - large and small. Heart attacks from the arteries and blood vessels to the limbs. In general, there is no problem with blood flow to the extremities, but gravity prevents blood flow from the extremities to the heart.
The arteries have valves that allow blood to flow in one direction so that the process of returning blood to the heart can continue unhindered. The algorithm for the normal operation of this process should be as follows:
- the heart beats;
- lift the limbs along the vessels;
- the blood rises to a certain level and is secured by a venous valve that prevents it from falling back
This happens until the next heartbeat, after which the cycle repeats itself. Muscle dynamics also contribute to normal blood circulation. Due to the rhythmic work of the muscles, the arteries constrict during contraction, which helps the natural blood flow.
With varicose veins, this process is disrupted. Venous valves lose their ability to repair blood, and there is a "backflow" of blood flow - backflow. This causes an increase in intravascular pressure, which results in the walls of the arteries losing their elasticity, stretching, and chronic venous insufficiency. The main factors in the development of the disease include doctors:
- genetic predisposition;
- excess weight;
- great physical activity;
- sedentary lifestyle;
- smoking, alcohol.
Excessive physical stress - prolonged static standing on the legs leads to an increase in intravascular pressure. The risk group includes people who are forced to work for a long time due to the nature of their activities:
- hairdressers, etc.
A sedentary lifestyle leads to muscle atrophy and a decrease in the tone of the vascular system as a whole. And bad habits such as smoking or alcohol consumption are negative additional factors in the development of venous insufficiency.
The main trigger for the formation of varicose veins in women, along with genetic predisposition, doctors call pregnancy. In this sensitive period, women experience a reconstruction of the hormonal background.
There is a decrease in immunity and general weakening of the body due to disorders of the endocrine system. Often, the disease begins to manifest itself after birth. Also, the cause of varicose veins in women is the desire to follow fashion trends - to wear high heels.
Cardiovascular diseases account for 30% of male deaths. First of all, this is due to the thicker blood than women. For this reason, men are more susceptible to the formation of vascular plaques that cause strokes and heart attacks. Thick blood, which is one of the main factors in the formation of varicose veins, increases intravascular pressure.
It should be noted that most occupations that require physical strength are mainly male. In men, the risk of developing varicose veins is due to healthy eating habits, tobacco or alcohol abuse.
Phlebologists deal with the problems of vascular diseases, conduct statistical research, believe that varicose veins are "rejuvenated". Partly due to the lack of such statistics 20-30 years ago. The prevalence of the disease among young people is primarily due to genetic predisposition.
The fact is that if one of the parents has varicose veins, there is a 70% chance that the disease will be inherited. It should be noted that it is not the disease itself, but a genetic predisposition. This can be expressed by defective venous valves, thinner vascular walls, or insufficient collagen synthesis, which leads to weakness of connective tissue. Children are more likely to develop varicose veins:
- abdominal hernia;
- straight legs;
These factors cause changes in body position and changes in the center of gravity during walking. This leads to uneven distribution of the load on the lower extremities and can contribute to the development of varicose veins.
In modern children, a sedentary lifestyle is another reason for the development of varicose veins. Thanks to computerization, which is found everywhere, physically active games in the real world have been successfully replaced by games in the virtual world.
Today, along with modern terms such as "K - stroke", "K - heart attack", another term - "computer varicose veins" has emerged. Prolonged constriction of the arteries while sitting at the computer causes physical inactivity. This problem affects both children and adults.
Other factors in the development of the disease include the psychosomatic state of the person. Frequent anxiety, worry, irritability, and depression are all symptoms of a "harmful" stress condition or "boredom. "This situation is typical:
- increased blood pressure;
- depression of the central nervous system;
- dysfunction of the exocrine system;
- decrease in immunity.
Manifestations of emotional stress are normal and even beneficial for a person. A stressful situation is a protective reaction of the body against external factors, which helps to quickly mobilize all the body's resources to find the right answers to a particular situation. However, systemic stress leads to nervous exhaustion and adversely affects all functions of the body.
Symptoms and diagnosis
The main symptom of varicose veins of the legs is an increase in subcutaneous veins. At the initial stage, there are no specific symptoms of the disease, which makes it difficult to diagnose the disease in time. However, in the process of development, the patient begins to observe the physiological transformation of blood vessels. The veins dilate, capillary networks appear, and the veins acquire a "loose" substance in the form of venous nodules. The following symptoms begin to bother a person:
- swelling of the limbs;
- limb alignment;
- feeling of heaviness or burning;
- trophic ulcers may develop, especially in advanced cases.
The disease develops over the years. You should consult a phlebologist to make a timely diagnosis. After the visual examination, the doctor may additionally order an ultrasound examination of the vessels or use a radiopaque examination method with the introduction of radiopaque substances into the circulatory system.
It is no longer possible to treat this problem with creams or ointments for "stretching" veins. There are two main ways to do this:
Conservative treatment does not cure the disease. The technique is more of a tool to prepare for surgery and is also used for prophylactic purposes to prevent the development of pathology or to speed up the patient's postoperative rehabilitation.
Conservative treatment involves physiotherapy procedures and drug treatment using drugs from the group of phlebotonics and anticoagulants. These drugs are designed to strengthen the walls of blood vessels and thin the blood. Patients are also prescribed vitamin therapy and wear compression underwear. Modern surgical treatment includes the following methods:
- phlebectomy - surgical removal of part of the affected area of blood vessels;
- laser coagulation is a minimally invasive treatment that does not require incisions and hospitalization;
- radiofrequency is a modern treatment that does not require coagulation, incision, or hospitalization;
- Sclerotherapy is the most widely used method abroad, consisting of the procedure of "gluing" the affected vessels.
Modern technologies for the treatment of varicose veins can relieve the disease in a very short time, even without hospitalization. Ignoring this problem and lack of treatment can contribute to the formation of trophic ulcers and the development of thrombophlebitis, which can be fatal.