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Study shows: around six times more relapses due to laser treatment
Varicose veins are widespread diseases in Germany. The spider veins develop more than every second person in the course of life. Around every tenth person has a dangerous variant in which the varicose veins are life-threatening because they increase the risk of thrombosis or life-threatening pulmonary embolism. Laser treatment to remove such varicose veins is widespread in Germany. However, a recent study shows that this method leads to very high relapse rates.
Researchers at the Ruhr University in Bochum compared laser therapy to remove varicose veins with the classic surgical removal of varicoses. The research team found that laser treatment caused an alarmingly high number of relapses within the first five years. The reason: When lasering, a vein stump remains in the obliterated vein. This increases the risk of relapse. The research results were recently published in the specialist journal "Phlebology".
This is how laser therapy for varicose vein removal works
The researchers explain the procedure for laser treatment to remove varicose veins: First, a catheter is inserted into the pathologically dilated vein. It is then heated so strongly with a laser beam that the vein closes. "Because of the intense heat, you have to keep a safe distance from the deep leg vein," explains Professor Dr. Achim Mumme, the director of the clinic for vascular surgery at St. Josef Hospital in Bochum, in a press release. Because of this safety distance, a vein stump remains after treatment.
The vein stump favors the emergence of further spider veins
"In the surgical removal of varicose veins, leaving a stump standing is a treatment error because you know that relapses often result," explains the professor. This fact was also confirmed in the current study. According to the results, relapse occurs 5.6 times more often than with the operative method. Professor Dr. Achim Mumme and his colleagues advise that surgical removal of varicose veins be preferred to laser therapy as a method.
Why do so many people suffer from varicose veins?
As the professional association of German internists reports, there are various factors that favor the development of varicoses. On the one hand, there is an inherent weakness of the vein walls or valves, which can also lead to varicose veins in adolescence. On the other hand, there are numerous risk factors that spider veins develop. These include, for example:
- Lack of exercise: The calf muscle pump is not activated sufficiently during predominantly sedentary and standing activities. In these positions, gravity also hinders the backflow of blood.
- Age: With increasing age, the risk of varicose veins increases because the elasticity of the tissue decreases and many people move less in older age.
- pregnancy: Hormone changes in pregnancy lead to stretching of the vein walls. As the baby grows larger in the womb, it can press on the mother's venous system. In most cases, such spider veins improve after birth.
- Overweight: Every unnecessary pound puts pressure on the leg veins. The more overweight, the stronger the pressure.
- Smoke: Tobacco use has an adverse effect on arterial blood flow to the body and thus increases the risk of varicoses.
- dress: Leg clothing that is too tight, especially socks, can affect blood flow. In people with weak vein walls, this can promote varicose veins.
- nutrition: A low-fiber diet is suspected of increasing the risk of varicose veins.
Healthy eating is extremely important
Vitamin C is very important for healthy veins and venous valves. This is mainly found in rose hips, sea buckthorn, black currants, gooseberries, parsley, kale, peppers and Brussels sprouts. Onions, garlic and ginger reduce the coagulants in the blood and should therefore be used regularly in cooking.
Alternating showers - A popular home remedy for varicose veins
With alternating showers, the alternation of cold and warm water stimulates the muscles of the blood vessels. The natural pump function of the veins is trained by switching between cold and warm. In addition, alternating showers relieve tired, heavy legs, stimulate the circulation and can even have a beneficial effect on high blood pressure. Please note: Always start with the right arm!
More information: These home remedies for varicose veins can help with non-dangerous variants of spider veins. (vb)