How are Skin Conditions Linked to Varicose Veins?

Written By Center for Vein Restoration
Man and woman ankles under table

Having varicose veins is never fun. As if the veins on their own aren't troublesome enough, they can also affect the skin. When blood collects in the legs and ankles due to weakened valves in your veins, the inflammation that occurs as a result can lead to a variety of skin changes. This is in addition to the pain and discomfort many people experience with varicose veins.

In this blog, we’ll take a closer look at the skin conditions linked to varicose veins and some of the top treatment options available to you.

Skin Conditions Linked to Varicose Veins

If you have varicose veins, there are three main skin conditions that you should keep an eye out for.

Venous eczema

Also known as stasis dermatitis, venous eczema is an inflammatory skin condition that occurs in the lower legs due to fluid accumulation. The condition typically affects the shins and ankles, turning them brown or red as fluid builds up in the tissues. The skin can become itchy, flaky, thick, discolored, ulcerated, and prone to bleeding. If left untreated, venous eczema can lead to skin infections and chronic leg ulcers.

Venous ulcers

Venous ulcers usually begin with a simple bruise or broken skin on the leg that may be accompanied by itching, swelling, or pain. For people with vein disease (including varicose veins), this wound is unlikely to heal as it normally would. In fact, it may never heal. Instead, it may increase in size and transform into a painful, raw, shallow wound that produces a foul-smelling discharge.

Psoriasis

People usually think of psoriasis and varicose veins as separate conditions, but research shows a relationship between blood vessel inflammation and psoriasis. That means people with varicose veins should be aware of the signs of psoriasis. This chronic skin disease that is characterized by flaky, red patches on the skin (typically on the knees, elbows, face, scalp, palms, lower back, and soles of the feet).

Treatment Options for Skin Conditions Linked to Varicose Veins

The good news is that there are many ways you can treat the skin conditions linked to varicose veins through both home remedies and medical procedures. The relationship between the conditions means that if you treat the varicose veins, which could most likely be the root cause, the skin condition can go away on its own! Here are some popular treatment options to consider if you’re experiencing skin conditions linked to varicose veins:

Lifestyle changes

Taking steps to improve your circulation is a great way to prevent and treat your varicose veins (and the skin conditions associated with them). Try increasing your activity by taking daily walks and avoid spending too long sitting or standing without moving. You should also frequently raise your legs to reduce the strain on your leg veins.

Compression stockings

Worn daily, these stockings help improve circulation by squeezing your legs at your foot and ankle. They can be worn in combination with the lifestyle changes above to improve circulation even more.

Topical corticosteroids

These creams and ointments can be applied to the skin to help treat and relieve the symptoms of eczema.

Emollients

These moisturizers can be applied to your skin to keep it from becoming dry and flaky.

Medical vein treatments

If you want to eliminate varicose veins (and the skin conditions associated with them), the only option is to treat the veins medically. Meaning that while home remedies can reduce symptoms, the only way to get rid of varicose veins is through professional treatment.

The treatments are minimally invasive, take minutes to complete, and require little to no downtime. By treating your varicose veins, you not only get rid of the painful, twisted leg veins — you also remedy the associated skin conditions at the source.

Improve Your Vein and Skin Health

Are you worried that your veins could lead to skin conditions now or in the future? Our specialists can answer all your questions about the relationship between your varicose veins and skin conditions. Whether you’re in Las Cruces, Rio Rancho, Truth or Consequences, Deming, or Albuquerque — the specialists at Center for Vein Restoration can find the perfect treatment to help you feel your best. Contact us today to schedule a consultation!



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