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She’s got Legs!!!

Have you ever had that achy, dull throbbing pain in your legs after being on them all day?  Or seen those purple bulging veins running up and down your legs?  Well if  you can answer yes to either of these then you probably have issues with varicose veins.  What are they you ask?

Arteries carry blood from your heart to the rest of your tissues. Veins return blood from the rest of your body to your heart, so the blood can be recirculated. To return blood to your heart, the veins in your legs must work against gravity.

Muscle contractions in your lower legs act as pumps, and elastic vein walls help blood return to your heart. Tiny valves in your veins open as blood flows toward your heart then close to stop blood from flowing backward.

Causes of varicose veins can include:

  • As you get older, your veins can lose elasticity, causing them to stretch. The valves in your veins may become weak, Which makes the blood flow backwards and pool in your legs. The veins look blue because they contain deoxygenated blood, which is in the process of being recirculated through the lungs.
  •  Some pregnant women develop varicose veins. Your body is making extra blood Noumea for the baby but unfortunately it’s not flowing back up because of the extra pressure of your uterus.  But you’re lucky most of the time and these go away after you deliver in about 4-6 weeks.
  • Obesity can be another cause too.
  • And standing or sitting for long periods of time can put undue stress on your veins.Unfortunately they are also hereditary and I was lucky enough to get this trait passed on.  And because I have been a nurse for almost 30 years and didn’t take care of myself by wearing support stockings or compression socks, I ended up with some pretty bad ones.  My legs hurt all the time and I had one that was very bulgy on the back of my leg that actually hurt.  So, I went to see a vascular surgeon and he gave me the bad news.  Both of my legs had a circulatory problem which was why I was suffering.  So, I decided to have laser surgery about 4 years ago.  They were able to make my legs look and feel great again.  I religiously wore my compression socks at work and then Bam!  Another one came back and my legs were hurting again.  So this time I sought treatment from a specialist and he suggested actually removing the veins and doing some light laser surgery on my saphenous vein.

So, on the day of my surgery, I decided to take one of the little happy pills they offered and away I went.

These pictures document the journey and now today, I am still recovering but my legs feel and look better.  I will go in for one last injection treatment in the fall just to touch up some spots but it’s best not to do these types of procedures when you are going to be out in the sun.  You can get darkened spots on your legs will not go away.

So if I can make any suggestions to those of you who work on your feet every day.  WEAR compression socks or support hose.  Your legs will thank you later on in life.