menopause The natural decline in reproductive hormones in a woman occurs when she reaches her 40s or 50s. As such, in the years leading up to menopause, like pregnancy, women experience a lot of hormonal imbalances or fluctuations, which in turn can occur. many symptoms Or disorders, said Dr. Nanda Rajneesh, General and Laparoscopic Surgeon, Apollo Spectra Hospital, Bangalore. “It is such a common problem that many women suffer from at this stage in their lives,” the expert told indianexpress.com.
What are varicose veins?
Varicose veins are a symptom that usually occurs during menopause and usually goes away without any pain. In simple words, varicose veins are dilated and enlarged veins – purple in color – that appear mainly on the legs. Nagarathna, DS, MBBS, DGO, Consultant Obstetrics and Gynecology, Apollo Cradle and Children’s Hospital – Koramangala said, “The symptoms of menopause persist for years, so women become more vulnerable to varicose veins.”
“In addition to their primary reproductive functions, the hormones estrogen and progesterone help increase blood valve functioning, valve flexibility, and blood flow. Thus, a sharp decrease in hormone levels causes the blood wall to thicken, reducing flexibility. In the absence of these hormones, the veins become more brittle and dry, causing blood to pool in the valves, and hence, varicose veins,” explained Dr. Nagarathna.
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Age, gender, pregnancy, family history, obesity, and prolonged standing or sitting are some common risk factors. “Research shows that the reproductive hormones – estrogen and progesterone – have a beneficial effect on the support of the vein wall. The years leading up to menopause have an increased risk of developing a hormonal imbalance. Varicose veins, During menopause, estrogen and progesterone levels increase, followed by a subsequent decline. The increased levels of estrogen and progesterone have a dilating effect on the walls of the veins, increasing their elasticity. But when the level drops sharply, it has the opposite effect which is excessive thickening and narrowing of the vein walls. Due to this thickening, the valves of the veins stop working effectively, causing blood to pool in the veins, causing them to become swollen and nauseous. Thick vein walls can also create a narrowed passage for the return of blood leading to congestion and swelling in the leg,” explained Dr Nanda.
what to keep in mind
Whether a woman is at or nearing menopause, there are some important things they need to know about managing and preventing varicose veins.
“Varicose veins are experienced when a woman gains” menopause They usually fade and most of the time they are not painful. Unfortunately, however, some women have a tendency to experience pain, heaviness in the legs, skin problems such as itching, ulcers on the leg, sudden bleeding from these varicose veins, and blood clots. Such symptoms require specialist help of a general surgeon or a vascular surgeon,” Dr Nanda said.
He said the doctor would examine the foot and also do an ultrasound to check the blood flow in the leg to get a better idea of the extent of the disease. Typically, surgeons recommend lifestyle changes, including the adoption of low-impact exercises that use the leg muscles to improve circulation and, to avoid prolonged standing, the use of compression socks. To use, and whenever resting or sleeping, elevate legs to combat varicose veins. is mild or asymptomatic.
if these lifestyle changes If there is no benefit or if the varicose veins are very severe, surgery such as vein ligation and stripping may be recommended. However, since it requires anesthesia and is invasive, the medical fraternity has come up with a wide variety of minimally invasive options such as sclerotherapy, laser surgery, endogenous ablation therapy and endoscopic venous surgery.
“Varicose veins get worse over time if left untreated. So women age of menopause They should take care of the health of their veins and consult a doctor at the earliest sign of varicosity,” Dr Nanda said.
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