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The cause of venous complaints

The cause of venous problems is meanwhile known in much detail. The trigger is a genetic weakness of the veins. To blame for this weakness is that which was such a crucial factor in human development, man’s upright posture. Almost 7000 litres of blood must be pumped against gravity in the veins from the feet to the heart. When venous valves are impaired in the case of venous disease, there is a delay in the transport of the blood back to the heart. This at first manifests itself in heavy legs and in a tendency of the legs to swell and can indicate a wide variety of different health conditions.

In the deep veins:

A prerequisite for efficiently functioning venous valves is a venous wall with sufficient tension. Only if the latter requirement is met can the venous valves close properly. Is this not the case, ie are the venous walls distended, warped or have lost their shape, eg in the case of varicose veins, the distance between the two valves grows and they can no longer close properly. Blood can flow back unhindered. One then speaks of venous insufficiency. The venous blood flows as a consequence from the deep leg veins against its natural direction into the superficial veins and causes blood congestion there. The veins must collect the increased volume of blood and expand as a result.

In the superficial veins:

Are only the venous valves of the superficial venous system defective, the deep venous system has to transport more blood than intended. Blood volume increases and the veins distend.
Result: the venous valves can no longer close properly and the blood is only directed back to the heart with delay.
This at first manifests itself in heavy legs and in a tendancy for the legs to swell and can reflect a range of different types of disease, such as varicosis ( varicose veins) and complications following thromboses.

The associated discomfort and changes to the skin of the legs are referred to as chronic venous insufficiency (CVI).

These factors favour the development of varicose veins

1. Impaired blood flow:

  • clothing that is too tight and pinches
  • crossed legs
  • blood volume too high as a result of pregnancy
  • sitting or standing for long periods of time
  • unhealthy diet, obesity

2. Relaxed venous wall:

  • Alcohol
  • Heat
  • Hormones (anti-baby pill, hormones against menopause, pregnancy)

3. Impaired muscle pump:

  • wrong shoes (high heels)
  • sitting or standing for long periods of time
  • paralysis

4. Heridity:

  • congenital weakness of connective tissue and the venous walls