What To Do About a Burst Varicose Vein
A sudden rush of blood from a ruptured varicose vein can be alarming — and a sign that your vein needs immediate medical treatment.
Among the many symptoms of varicose veins, perhaps the most distressing — and potentially most dangerous — is a burst varicose vein. If you ever experience sustained and severe bleeding from a varicose vein, you should immediately call 911 or your vein specialist for prompt treatment.
Although the unsightly appearance of protruding veins on the legs are what most people associate with the condition, varicose veins indicate a serious underlying medical disorder: venous insufficiency. Varicose veins are often a red flag your veins aren’t working as they should. So when the veins bleed, you must quickly seek medical advice.
Why Varicose Veins Bleed
Within your veins are tiny valves that drive blood back to the heart after it has circulated to the extremities. Unfortunately, heredity, obesity, pregnancy, or lack of exercise can cause those valves to weaken. The weakened valves can’t pump blood to the chest, causing it to build up in the vein. As a result, the veins swell from under the skin, becoming varicose veins.
Because these veins are closer to the skin’s surface, they’re easily exposed to cuts and bruises. What’s more, the excess pressure of the pooled blood thins the vein walls, making them vulnerable to bursting. A slight brush against a table — or even lightly scrubbing your leg during a hot shower, when veins are dilated — can cause a sudden rupture.
Since veins carry an enormous volume of blood, the bleeding can be profuse. Significant bleeding can also occur if you take blood thinners. Varicose veins on the lower leg and ankle are the most susceptible to cuts.
In some cases, bleeding may be internal and you won’t see an actual break in the skin. The skin will look bruised, and if enough blood is lost, you may feel faint and dizzy. If you notice those symptoms, you should go to the emergency room or check in with your vein specialist.
Before you receive emergency medical attention, you should press a cotton towel or gauze pad against the vein and prop your legs above your heart to stem the bleeding. However, even if the bleeding stops, you still require treatment to prevent another burst and a significant loss of blood.
To prevent a burst varicose vein, talk to your vein specialist about the minimally invasive procedures available to permanently rid you of varicose veins. Your vein doctor can recommend an appropriate course of treatment for you.
Let Us Heal Your Varicose Veins
The Center for Vein Restoration is now open for in-person and telemedicine appointments. If you’ve experienced a burst varicose veins or a slow-healing leg sores, please reach out to us immediately to see one of our vein specialists.