On this website, we write about veins and vein disease a great deal, because, after all and being a top vein doctor in Bergen County, that is our specialty at Chuback Medical Group. So we provide articles about the different types of vein disease and the state-of-the-art treatments we offer to eliminate them. But every so often we realize that we need to backtrack a little and talk about veins, period – to make sure that our readers understand what they are, how they work, and what happens when they become diseased.
10 facts about veins that all New Jersey residents should know.
- Veins are one of the most important components of your circulatory system. Arteries convey blood and nutrients to your organs and extremities, while veins convey deoxygenated blood back to the heart and lungs for renewal.
- Arteries have internal muscles with which to pump blood, but veins do not; they have to rely on the constriction of muscles in your extremities to provide the pumping action. The flow of venous blood in one direction (towards the heart) is maintained by a series of tiny, one-way valves that open to allow blood through, and then close to keep it from flowing backwards.
- If disease damages these tiny valves, they become “leaky” and allow a backwards flow called venous reflux or chronic venous insufficiency (CVI).
- In veins that have been damaged by CVI, blood flows back into them and accumulates there, causing the veins to become varicose. Varicose veins become swollen and discolored (taking on the bluish-purple color of deoxygenated blood), and thus become visible on the surface of the skin.
- More important, veins that have become varicose damage your overall circulation, and can result in side effects such as painfully swollen legs and ankles, chronic feelings of tiredness or weakness in the legs, changes to skin texture and color, and (if untreated) open sores called leg ulcers.
- Untreated varicose veins can cause more serious damage, impairing your immune system and increasing your risk of obesity, heart attack, and stroke.
- Once venous valves have become damaged by CVI, they can’t be “fixed” or repaired. You can minimize side effects by wearing compression stockings, but the only permanent way to treat varicose veins is to remove them, using sclerotherapy, phlebectomy, or endovenous laser therapy (EVLT).
- Fortunately, these treatments are fast, painless, and above all, effective. Once varicose veins have been closed by your NJ vascular doctor, the underlying vein disease is eliminated and the side effects go away. The closed veins are absorbed into surrounding tissue and healthier veins take over the circulation of blood.
- CVI and varicose veins are not the most serious of vein diseases; that would be deep vein thrombosis or DVT, which causes blood clots to form in the deep veins of your legs. These clots impair your circulation and immune system even if they stay where they formed, but the real danger is if they move through the veins to the lungs. There they can cause a pulmonary embolism, which can be fatal.
- You can’t really tell if you have vein disease by looking at the surface of your skin. The only sure way is to have a venous health screening at your vein treatment center in NJ, during which your doctor uses ultrasound to look below the surface to detect CVI, DVT, or other possible diseases.
So how do I find out more about veins and vein disease?
You could spend some time reading through the many articles we’ve provided on our website at https://chubackmedical.com/veins/, but the best way is to give our top vein doctor in Bergen County a call at 201-693-4847 to schedule your own venous health screening.