We encourage our Bend, Oregon varicose vein patients to pursue treatment early to avoid complications. If the vein problems become severe and long standing, they can cause a number of symptoms, including:
- A heavy sensation in the legs when standing
- Legs that fatigue easily
- Aching pain
- Itching and skin irritation along the swollen veins
- Throbbing sensation along the veins
- Restless legs at night
- Skin discoloration around the ankles
Patients tend to find that the longer they are up and on their feet, the worse the symptoms they experience. To learn more about treatment for varicose veins at our Bend, Oregon vein center request a consultation with one of our specialists, or call our office at (541) 382-8346 to make an appointment.
Beyond the symptoms, patients can have complications when varicose veins persist and go untreated. In a number of cases, long-standing venous insufficiency occurs, wherein the blood in the veins pools and stretches out the veins and skin, resulting in chronic leg pain and swelling. This problem can be particularly severe in patients who have had previous deep venous thrombosis, a condition known as post-thrombotic syndrome.
One of the first complications seen is at the skin level, often at the ankle. Patients can develop:
- Ankle hyperpigmentation (increased skin color)
- Lipodermatosclerosis (hard, plaque-like painful areas affecting the skin and the tissues under the skin)
- Atrophie blanche (white scar tissue)
- Stasis dermatitis
Because the skin tissue around the varicose veins, especially at the ankle level, may not receive enough nourishment when the venous pressures are high, sores or skin ulcers may develop. Without treating the superficial venous insufficiency, these ulcers can be very difficult to heal and can result in permanent disability.
Another potentially serious condition is called superficial venous thrombophlebitis, which is inflammation in a clotted superficial vein. This process can further damage the valves, contributing to worsening vein problems. This can also progress to problems involving blood clots developing in the deep vein, a condition known as deep vein thrombosis (DVT). These blood clots can be very dangerous, as a clot can travel from the leg veins to the lungs, known as a pulmonary embolism, where it may block the heart and lungs from functioning.
Occasionally, the skin over the veins becomes so thin that the skin breaks open and bleeding ensues.