Are Your Varicose Veins Causing a Skin Rash?
Do your varicose veins have anything to do with your lower leg rashes? Learn more about the connection between these two conditions.
If you’ve suffered from varicose veins in the past, you’re familiar with the various kinds of pain and discomfort they can cause. When the valves that carry blood from your legs to your torso are weak or broken, the blood flows back down and pools in the veins of your legs. This causes your veins to swell and twist, which can make the area around the damaged veins feel uncomfortably heavy or achy.
Have you also noticed that the skin around your varicose veins can get itchy, dry, and cracked? Is there any connection between these two conditions? Here’s what you need to know.
Can Varicose Veins Cause Skin Rashes?
If you have varicose veins and a persistent skin rash, it’s not a coincidence. Venous stasis dermatitis, also known as varicose eczema, is a skin disorder that’s very common among people with varicose veins. Sometimes when the blood that pools up in the blood vessels leaks out into the skin, the inflammation that comes with these leaky vessels prevents oxygen from reaching the skin.
In the most mild cases, symptoms of venous stasis dermatitis include red and scaly skin in the affected area and intense itching. If the condition worsens, you can develop seeping sores that crust over and form scars, deeply pigmented skin, and hard areas of thick, fibrotic skin. In the worst cases, the cracked skin caused by venous stasis dermatitis makes you vulnerable to a bacterial infection. When harmful bacteria enter the body through the skin, you can develop cellulitis, a serious skin infection that penetrates the deeper layers of skin to damage the tissues underneath.
How to Treat Rashes Caused by Varicose Veins
The good news is that you don’t have to suffer through the skin rashes caused by varicose veins. To soothe and treat your skin rash, you must start taking care of your skin as a whole, not just the affected areas. Switch to a gentle body wash or soap for sensitive skin, and follow up with a fragrance-free moisturizer. Moisturize as often as needed throughout the day and use a thick emollient cream at night — that’s when your skin heals itself. To spot treat rough patches, try a medicated corticosteroid or an anti-itch cream packed with antihistamines.
To manage your itchy varicose veins at home, there are numerous home remedies you can try. Keep your blood pumping throughout the day by moving around every hour and fitting in some light exercise that won’t exacerbate your varicose veins. Also, you can elevate your legs for about two hours every fifteen minutes to keep blood flowing in the right direction. Wearing compression stockings while sitting and standing can improve your blood flow and reduce painful swelling that can make itching worse.
Get Long-Lasting Relief
The best way to achieve long-lasting relief from venous stasis dermatitis is to clinically remove the underlying cause — varicose veins. Center for Vein is the premier provider of vein treatments in the Metro-Atlanta area, and we can find the perfect vein therapy for you that will ease your pain and help you love your legs again. Contact us today to set up an appointment.