The Various Stages of Vein Disease
Vein disease is a common problem among both men and women. It cuts across a wide range of ages. It is noteworthy that each individual who is affected by this problem experiences it differently. While some people will only manifest mild symptoms characterized by few visible veins, others show advanced symptoms characterized by noticeable swelling of the legs; as a result of the bulging veins.
Basically, the veins work against gravity to let blood flow back into an individual’s heart. The one-way valves in the veins allow blood to move through, and once the blood passes, they close to ensure that the blood does not move backwards. However, the veins do not perform this function if they are damaged or weak. What happens when one is affected by the disease is that blood flows back against the valves; and in the process makes the veins swell.
There are various stages of vein disease. Regardless of the stage that the individual is undergoing, the bottom line is that if no concrete moves towards treatment are taken, it is bound to get worse. Many patients assume that a few spider veins or small varicose veins are not a big issue; the reality is that if left unchecked, they invariably progress to worse stages. It is important for anyone to understand how this condition progresses.
Here is a list of the stages of vein disease and their accompanying symptoms.
1. Stage One
The first stage of vein disease occurs in 18% of men and 40% of women. This stage is characterized by small dilated capillaries and veins. They are often ignored because they are not very conspicuous to the untrained eye.
2. Stage Two
This stage is more noticeable because varicose veins appear. They are larger than the ones noted in stage one. 75% of patients will notice this stage as it interferes with their daily routine activities.
3. Stage Three
This stage of the disease is more advanced. The backflow in the vein system has become so serious that it affects the ability of the body to reabsorb fluid. This makes the legs to swell severely, a condition referred to as leg edema. Patients will be often be seen trying to lift or prop their legs up in a bid to gain some relief.
4. Stage Four
In this stage of the disease, the skin will appear discolored and quite thin. The skin is further exposed to the repeated risk of injury, and when this happens, it takes too long to rejuvenate. It is not uncommon for patients to mistake the signs and symptoms characteristic of this stage for some other condition like dermatitis or cellulitis.
5. Stages Five and Six
Of all the stages of vein disease, this is the most advanced. By the time the patient gets to this stage, the skin has been depleted of nutrition and quite often experiences injuries that do not easily heal. Venous ulcers are quite common, and that is why this stage is usually referred to as ‘leg ulcers’. In stage five, the leg ulcers tend to sort of heal, while in stage six they are active and unhealed.
A professional surgeon is the best person to diagnose vein disease. If an individual suspects that they are experiencing any of the stages of vein disease, the best option is to arrange an appointment with the surgeon before the condition worsens.