Why You Should Never Ignore Leg Pain and Swelling

Your veins are the blood vessels that carry blood back to your heart and lungs. They have tiny valves that help push your blood against gravity, supporting efficient circulation. However, weakness in the valves in your veins can allow your blood to flow backward or pool in a section of a damaged vein, a condition known as chronic venous insufficiency.

If you live with painful, cramping legs, it’s time to talk to a vascular specialist and get help. That’s where Hadi Shalhoub, DO, FACOS, and the rest of the team at Advanced Vascular Solutions in Sebastian, Florida, come in. Our team offers innovative diagnoses and treatments for vein problems to reduce your pain, swelling, and other complications. 

Complications of untreated vein problems

Your veins are a critical part of your circulatory system, and if they’re damaged, that means that blood isn’t moving through your body correctly. When untreated, poor circulation can lead to a variety of painful and dangerous complications. 

Varicose veins

As mentioned, varicose veins form when weakness in your veins allows blood to pool in a section of the vein. While many people think that varicose veins are a cosmetic problem, they’re often a warning sign of vascular health problems. Additionally, the pooling blood can contribute to your leg pain and swelling and make your skin thin and itchy.

Leg ulcers

Another problem associated with swollen veins and trapped blood is that proteins can seep out of your veins and into the surrounding tissue. This transfer leads to ulcer formation. These ulcers cause skin discoloration and can make your skin thin, dry, and scaly. They typically form on your ankles or lower legs. Ulcers have a high infection risk and require medical management.

Blood clots

Blood clots are another risk associated with untreated vein health problems. If you develop clots in the veins near the surface of your legs, they’re typically painful but don’t necessarily travel to other parts of your body. However, if you develop deep vein thrombosis (DVT) — the clinical term for blood clots in your deep leg veins — it increases your risk of pulmonary embolism (a blood clot in the lungs).

Skin changes and bleeding

The combination of poor circulation, swollen leaky veins, and ulcers can also cause skin changes. The skin on your legs might look scaly, red, shiny, or leathery. Your skin can also become thin, dry, and vulnerable to injury. Combined with the itch caused by dry skin, you have a high risk of tearing your skin while scratching, leading to bleeding and infection.

Vein treatments

If you have chronic leg pain and swelling, or any other signs of a vein health problem, the team here at Advanced Vascular Solutions can help. We offer state-of-the-art vein treatments, including radiofrequency ablation, sclerotherapy, and VenaSeal™, to restore your vein health, relieve your symptoms, and prevent further complications.

We begin with a comprehensive exam, which may include a blood flow assessment with a vascular ultrasound or another diagnostic test to identify the condition causing your symptoms. Following your exam, we work with you to create a treatment plan to address your specific needs. 

All of our vein treatments are offered from the convenience of our office and only require local anesthesia. You can go home soon after your treatment is complete. In addition to our in-office vein treatments, we may recommend wearing compression stockings, giving up smoking, or losing weight to support vascular health. 

The earlier you get a diagnosis and treatment for chronic venous insufficiency and other vein health problems, the better. It reduces your risk of complications and prevents even more uncomfortable symptoms. If you’re concerned about your vein health, call our office or use the online booking tool to schedule an appointment today.

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