Is Vein Disease the Cause of Your Foot Problems?
April is Foot Health Awareness Month, the perfect time to reflect on these miraculous structures.
Our feet, made of bones, joints, muscles, tendons, and ligaments, bear our weight, provide balance and stability, and allow us to stand, walk, run, and dance. It’s important to listen to your feet if they tell you that there may be a problem. If you are experiencing problems with your feet that interfere with your daily life, it may be time to seek a consultation with a medical professional.
Vein Disease vs. Arterial Disease of the Feet
Mark A. Edelman, MD, DABVLM, a vein expert with Center for Vein Restoration, explains the difference between these two possible causes for foot problems. One possible reason could be arterial caused by a restriction of blood flow in the arteries. A person would know if they had this condition if they experience claudication. Dr. Edelman describes claudication as “having pain when you walk that improves when you take a break.”
Causes of arterial disease include smoking history, high blood pressure, diabetes, and obesity and can be controlled with diet, exercise, smoking cessation, blood pressure and sugar control.
Vein Disease and the Feet
By contrast, when a person has vein disease, they feel better when they walk and worse when they are standing or sitting, says Dr. Edelman. He explains that when the vein valves don’t work properly, vein blood pools in the legs and irritates the nerves. This leads to pain when a person is still. However, when the person with vein disease is walking, the calf muscles contract and move the vein blood, thus reducing the irritation.
Unlike a person with arterial disease, a person with vein disease feels better when putting their legs up. This is because elevation "dumps the vein blood back to the heart," explains Dr. Edelman. Elevating one’s feet does not bring relief to someone suffering from arterial disease.
Signs of Vascular Disease in the Legs
- Skin changes
- Restless legs at night
If left untreated, vein disease can lead to recurring wounds, infections, or cellulitis (a potentially serious bacterial skin infection). This can damage the skin and become a serious medical problem, warns Dr. Edelman.
The Goal of Vein Treatment
The goal of treating vascular disease of the feet is to restore a feeling of lightness, reduce swelling, throbbing, itching, and burning, and get the person back to a comfortable active lifestyle, says Dr. Edelman. He adds that “the good news is that vein disease is easily treatable if caught early when symptoms can be improved, and future complications can be prevented.”
Dr. Edelman emphasizes that at Center for Vein Restoration, we evaluate every patient for both arterial and vein disease and make the appropriate recommendations.
Feet Hurt? Schedule Your Evaluation Today!
There’s no need to live with painful feet. The board-certified vein specialists at Center for Vein Restoration provide state-of-the-art evaluations in our over 100 convenient locations nationwide. Our caring team of vein doctors offers fast, pain-free, affordable treatment options. Most insurance is accepted, including Medicare and Medicaid.
Call 1-800 FIX LEGS or visit our website to schedule your consultation.