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Our vein care specialists can spot signs of chronic venous insufficiency (CVI) by a number of specific skin changes. When left untreated, CVI causes veins to further dilate and become varicose. Check with us to see if your skin changes are a warning of something more serious.
There are many symptoms that warn of CVI, including aching, itching or tiredness in the legs.
If these symptoms go untreated long enough, CVI’s visual signs will appear to become worse through the following skin conditions:
If you have noticed skin changes, don't put off treatment and let this progress. Schedule an appointment.
If signs of CVI are not treated, leg pressure and swelling can increase until the small blood vessels around the ankles and feet burst. When these vessels burst the bleeding that follows should be controlled with pressure and swift vein treatment. Judicious pressure with elevation can avoid a trip to the ER, but follow-up treatment of the underlying veins is necessary to avoid recurrence.
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People with longstanding vein disease frequently develop prominent spider vein patterns over their ankles and sometimes their feet. These small veins are vulnerable to rupture when the skin is dry. Ruptures can result from shaving but more often occur while drying with a towel after showering. Less frequently, rupture can occur with standing or even in bed.
Veins dilate with the warm water. Brushing the towel over fragile, dry skin breaks the surface causing bleeding. This can be dramatic, with blood “shooting” across the room. Just remember that it is not as bad as it looks! Apply gentle pressure with a washcloth, tissue or toilet paper, lie down and elevate the bleeding leg. There is no need for 911 or the ER–this is not serious and should stop with pressure. Contacting Vascular Vein Centers for an appointment is sufficient. Our staff is very familiar with this situation and how to deal with it.
The most effective treatment of chronic venous insufficiency takes place early, when the symptoms are starting to occur.
Treatment can involve simple lifestyle changes to arrest and delay the progression of these skin changes:
If you’ve noticed skin changes, don’t put off treatment and let these progress. Schedule an appointment with our vein specialists to see the treatment options that can help reverse these skin changes and fight CVI.
Take this short, five-question quiz to find out if you’re at risk.
Do your legs often feel tired and heavy?
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