Does your job keep you at your desk or require you to stand for long hours? Then you probably have noticed a slight discoloration and swelling in your legs. These are most probably signs of varicose veins. Sitting or standing for long durations can hamper your circulation and put extra pressure on your legs leading to varicose veins. 

Varicose veins are usually a cosmetic concern. They are typically self-diagnosable and do not require laboratory imaging. It could be caused either by genetic/congenital factors or indicate an underlying circulation problem in some circumstances. Most often, the swelling reduces, and the pain goes away on its own. But if it doesn’t, there is cause for concern, and you need to get varicose veins treatment right away.

In this article, we’ll talk about a specific type of varicose vein that develops due to underlying venous illness and the stages it goes through 一 Chronic Venous Insufficiency  (CVI).

What is Chronic venous insufficiency(CVI)?

Chronic Venous Insufficiency (CVI) is a condition where the venous wall and/or valves in the leg veins do not function properly, making it difficult for the blood to flow back to the heart. Normally these veins would open to allow blood to flow back to the heart and then close again. But in CVI, the veins do not close properly, resulting in blood pools. 

This is what causes these veins to enlarge and take on the bluish-purple tint of deoxygenated blood, which you can see as spider veins and varicose veins. However, spider veins are only the first stage. 

Stages of Chronic Venous Insufficiency 

We can confidently identify the following six sets of symptoms as predictable “stages” of the disease, because they appear consistently and in many patients.

Stage 1 

Spider veins stage: These small, reddish-purple veins can be found on the legs, ankles, neck, face, and other parts of the body and are caused by the same underlying CVI as varicose veins. Women are more likely to have them than men.

Stage 2 

Enlarged, rope-like veins/varicose veins: This is the stage at which most people first realize they have a vein condition. Itching, burning, or numbness, as well as fatigued, weak, or achy legs, are accompanied by enlarged veins. If you start to notice these symptoms, it’s highly advisable to get varicose veins treatment right away. 

Stage 3 

Edema/swelling: In this stage, the CVI disrupts the ability of the circulatory system to reabsorb fluids, resulting in the swelling of the legs and ankles. As a quick relief, you can wear compression garments or elevate your legs, but it’s still necessary to have it checked out by a doctor. 

Stage 4 

Discolouration: Venous congestion and poor circulation can cause changes in skin colour and texture as the condition advances. The skin on your legs can turn reddish-brown or white and develop a leathery appearance, making it brittle and vulnerable to damage.

Stage 5

Healed ulcers: You’ll have open but healed patches on your skin at this stage. These open patches are referred to as ulcers. To prevent future ulcers, your treatments will focus on reducing swelling and varicose veins.

Stage 6

Active ulcers: In this final stage of CVI, skin injuries and leg ulcers will not heal despite treatment, leaving your legs literally covered in bloody open sores.

As you can see, as the stages progress, the symptoms become more gruesome. You can prevent all serious complications by consulting your doctor as soon as you notice varicose veins in its beginning stages. 

Get a diagnosis and treatment at the best hospital in Bangalore 一 Ayu Health Hospitals. We are known for being one of the best multi-speciality hospitals in Bangalore. Our treatment centres are approved by NABH, India’s primary hospital certification agency, and have all of the latest equipment for treating varicose veins. To book an appointment, call +91 – 6366 100 800 or visit our website.

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References

Varicose Veins | Johns Hopkins Medicine

https://www.hopkinsmedicine.org/health/conditions-and-diseases/varicose-veins#:~:text=Varicose%20veins%20happen%20in%20the,the%20veins%20to%20become%20enlarged.

Varicose Veins | Narayana Health

https://www.narayanahealth.org/varicose-veins

Understanding the Stages of Chronic Venous Insufficiency

https://www.healthline.com/health/chronic-venous-insufficiency-stages#ceap-categories

Chronic Venous Insufficiency: Treatment, Symptoms & Causes

https://my.clevelandclinic.org/health/diseases/16872-chronic-venous-insufficiency-cvi#:~:text=Chronic%20venous%20insufficiency%20(CVI)%20is,this%20pooling%20is%20called%20stasis.