Bulging, ropy, and discolored, varicose veins are a sign of poor vein health. They can also negatively impact a person’s aesthetics and self esteem. If you are suffering from varicose veins you probably have many questions. One of the queries that vein experts in Boynton Beach hear most often is “can arteries become varicose as well as veins?” The simple answer to this question is “no,” but to understand why requires a bit more explanation.
What do Boynton Beach residents need to know about the ways veins and arteries differ?
Your veins and your arteries have two very different tasks. Your arteries are responsible for transporting oxygenated blood to your extremities and your organs. This nutrient rich blood helps your body carry out its most important functions. After your blood is depleted, your veins return it back to the heart. These two tasks are different, so veins and arteries have different ways of going about their business.
If you were to take a closer look at your arteries, you would find that they are thick, tubular structures lined with muscle tissue. This tissue contracts each time your heart beats, giving blood the push it needs to travel throughout your body. Veins lack these thick, muscular walls. Instead, they rely a system of tiny one-way valves. These valves allow blood to flow towards the heart, but stop it from moving backwards into the vessel below. They also provide pressure that helps blood move against the force of gravity and back to the heart.
A vein’s lack of muscular wall puts it at risk for becoming varicose. If its valves become damaged or stop working effectively, blood can begin to build up in the vein. This allows the vein walls to stretch out, leading to lumpy, ropy varicose veins. Aesthetic issues aren’t the only symptoms associated with varicose veins: patients may also feel throbbing discomfort in their legs or itchiness on the skin around the diseased vessel.
What would happen if blood flow slowed down in an artery? Their strong walls and stretchy nature would help them stand up to the extra pressure. As a result, they will not become varicose. This doesn’t mean they can’t become diseased, though. Peripheral artery disease can occur, which may lead to leg pain and weakness.
What can be done to treat varicose veins?
Now that you do not have to worry about your arteries becoming varicose, it is time to think about how best to treat your damaged veins. Checking in with a vein doctor in Boynton Beach is a great place to start. Your doctor will run a series of tests on your varicosities to help him better understand your current condition. He may look inside your legs with a painless, non-invasive ultrasound. He may also ask you a series of questions about your lifestyle and family history.
Once your doctor understands your vascular condition, he can make recommendations about the best course of varicose vein treatment in Boynton Beach. He may encourage you to make changes in your lifestyle to help improve your vein function. Minimally invasive surgical vein treatment may also be an effective option.
Whether you are interested in vein removal in Boynton Beach or are simply looking for someone to answer questions about how your circulatory system functions, South Palm Cardiovascular Associates is here to help. Our compassionate and knowledgeable staff, led by Dr. Michael Metzger, Dr. Andrew Ruiz, Dr. Gustavo Cardenas, and Dr. Charles Harring III, is here to help keep your veins in the best shape possible. We’d love to talk with you further: give us a call at 561-515-0080 to help keep your veins in optimal shape.