What Happens If Varicose Veins Are Left Untreated?

Varicose veins are a common condition, occurring in about 25 percent of all adults, that happens as a result of damaged veins that have been filled with blood due to lack of poor circulation. Varicose veins appear discolored, often blue, purple or red, and cause symptoms such as swelling, itching, bulging, feelings of heaviness and acheness in the legs and/or feet, pain, and discomfort.

Varicose Veins are Unsightly and Uncomfortable

While varicose veins are both unsightly and uncomfortable, more often than not there is no grave danger that requires immediate medical treatment. At Fox Vein & Laser Experts, we see patients who want them removed for cosmetic reasons or because of the pain they’re experiencing. For this, Dr. Susan B Fox and her expert team offer various minimally invasive vein treatments that will help treat varicose veins. There are also a few home remedies that can help alleviate that pain and discomfort, such as wearing compression stockings or socks, keeping feet elevated, exercising regularly, and not sitting or standing for too long at a time.

Although rare, there is a chance that complications could arise because of these varicose veins, and for that reason, it might not be the best idea to leave them untreated. Varicose veins can sometimes lead to random bleeding and/or ulcers on the skin where the varicose veins are located. These skin ulcers happen because varicose veins keep the body from healing itself the way that it should. If you have varicose veins, it means that blood is not being circulated through the body correctly, which affects the healing process for any small cuts you might have. When a wound refuses to heal, skin ulcers can form, and bleeding can occur at random as well.

Untreated Varicose Veins can lead to Venous Insufficiency

Untreated varicose veins can lead to venous insufficiency. One of these conditions is called lipodermatosclerosis, which means that the skin around the varicose veins starts to harden and change color. It can be painful and cause swelling.

Varicose veins also increase the risk for blood clots. Blood clotting can lead to deep vein thrombosis (DVT) which then can lead to a very serious and life threatening medical condition, pulmonary embolism.

DVT occurs because of a blood clot forming within a deep vein, usually in the calves or thigh. Symptoms of DVT include swelling of the ankle or foot, cramping in the calf muscle, pain that appears without reason, a warm spot on the surface of the skin, discoloration of the skin, i.e., red, blue or purple.

As you can see, these symptoms are very similar to varicose veins, and sometimes people don’t even show symptoms. This is the scary part. People might not realize they need emergency medical help until they have already developed pulmonary embolism, which is when the blood clot breaks off and makes its way into the lungs, blocking a major artery. The symptoms of pulmonary embolism include chest pain, dizziness, anxious feelings, irregular heart beat and pulse, abnormal sweating, and coughing up blood. If you experience any of these symptoms, you must seek medical help immediately.

Contact Our Vein Doctor at Fox Vein & Laser Experts

If you aren’t sure what kind of treatment is needed for your varicose veins, our medical team is happy to consult with you and go over your options. With decades of experience diagnosing and treating varicose veins, you are in good hands at Fox Vein & Laser Experts Treatment. We can help rid you of the pain, discomfort, and frustration you are feeling because of your varicose veins. Depending on the type, the size, where the veins are located, and the level of symptoms you are experiencing, our team can suggest the best treatment option for your individual situation. Call our office at 954-627-1045 to schedule an appointment.