General symptoms of varicose veins can include swelling in the legs and ankles, fatigue, low energy levels, and outright pain. But, other than overt pain and loss of mobility, one of the most annoying side effects of varicose veins that “first timers” note, is their itchy veins.
What Causes Varicose Veins to Itch?
To understand this, you have to understand that varicose veins are caused by a circulatory disease called chronic venous insufficiency (CVI). This condition can happen for a number of reasons, such as aging, hereditary, and hormonal changes. CVI is when the tiny valves within veins malfunction and don’t close after blood flows through them. Instead of closing properly, they begin to leak, which allows blood to flow backwards into the veins and pool there. This is what causes them to swell and become discoloured, as they take on the bluish-purple colour of deoxygenated blood.
Over time, red blood cells that have leaked from the swollen veins begin to disintegrate, depositing haemoglobin and other substances into muscle tissue and skin. The result of this is that the skin covering these swollen veins can become inflamed, leading to symptoms such as ulcers, pain and itching skin. Veins that are left untreated, can lead to varicose eczema, a darkening of the skin around the veins. Varicose eczema is a long-term condition that will not go away by itself.
Solutions for Effective and Long-lasting Relief From Itchy Varicose Veins?
The most effective and long-lasting relief from itching varicose veins can be provided by eliminating the varicose veins themselves. Thanks to modern venous medicine, treatment can be provided quickly, easily, and painlessly. The procedures are minimally invasive and require no hospitalisation or general anaesthesia. They are “walk in, walk out” procedures, performed in the comfort of The Vein Institute clinics.
Solutions for Temporary Relief From Itchy Varicose Veins?
Varicose eczema can be treated similarly to other common skin conditions. The treatments listed below are, at best, temporary solutions. They may soothe the discomfort rather than treating the root of the problem.
Steroid Ointments/Medicated Creams
A corticosteroid can help bring down varicose eczema inflammation and relieve the itching, by reducing the activity of the immune system. Your doctor will determine if you are a suitable candidate for steroid creams and which cream would be a good fit.
Wearing compression stockings for venous insufficiency can improve the blood flow and reduce some leg swelling. Compression stockings come in a range of strengths, lengths and thickness.
To treat varicose eczema it is necessary to eliminate the source of the problem, because of this stockings or bandages are not likely to be a long term solution.
The Vein Institute provides non-surgical treatments for problem varicose veins, using laser technology. You can read more about the treatments we offer here. Call us on 1300 535 017 to find out more.