Signs and Symptoms
1. Swollen, twisted clusters of purple or blue veins.
2. Swollen legs.
3. An ache or heavy feeling in the legs.
4. Itching around affected veins.
5. Brown discoloring of skin.
What to Do Now
1. Wear elastic support stockings, available at most drugstores.
2. Stay off your feet as much as possible.
3. When you need to stand for long periods, take frequent breaks to sit down and put your feet up.
When to Call a Doctor
1. If you have cut a varicose vein-it may bleed heavily. First lie down, elevate the injured leg, and apply gentle, firm pressure with a clean cloth. Get help as soon as possible after the bleeding has slowed.
2. If varicose veins make walking or standing painful.
3. If you develop sores.
How to Prevent It
1. If your are overweight, take steps to loose the extra pounds.
2. Exercise regularly. Activities that work the leg muscles, such as walking or jogging, help pump blood toward the heart.
3. Don’t wear tight clothing.
4. Don’t cross your legs.
5. Avoid long periods of sitting or standing.
6. Sit or lie down and elevate your legs to about hip level at least twice a day for 30 minutes at a time.
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