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Varicose Veins

WHAT YOU SHOULD KNOW:

Varicose veins are veins that become large, twisted, and swollen. They are common on the back of your calves, knees, and thighs.


INSTRUCTIONS:

Medicines:

  • Prescription pain medicine may be given. Ask how to take this medicine safely.

  • Take your medicine as directed. Call your healthcare provider if you think your medicine is not helping or if you have side effects. Tell him if you are allergic to any medicine. Keep a list of the medicines, vitamins, and herbs you take. Include the amounts, and when and why you take them. Bring the list or the pill bottles to follow-up visits. Carry your medicine list with you in case of an emergency.

Pressure stockings:

You may need to wear pressure stockings. The stockings are tight and put pressure on your legs. They improve blood flow and help prevent clots.


Follow up with your healthcare provider as directed:

Write down your questions so you remember to ask them during your visits.

Self-care:

  • Elevate your legs above the level of your heart for 15 to 30 minutes several times a day. This will help blood to flow back to your heart.

  • Avoid sitting or standing for long periods of time. This can cause the blood to collect in your legs and make your symptoms worse. Walk around for a few minutes every hour to get blood moving in your legs.

  • Avoid wearing tight clothing and shoes. Avoid wearing high-heeled shoes. Do not wear clothes that are tight around the waist.

  • Get plenty of exercise. Talk to your healthcare provider about the best exercise plan for you. Exercise can decrease your blood pressure and improve your health. Bend or rotate your ankles several times every hour. This will help blood to flow back to the heart.

  • Maintain a healthy weight. Your heart works harder when you are overweight and this can make varicose vein worse. Ask how much you should weigh. Ask him to help you create a weight loss plan if you are overweight.

  • Do not smoke. If you smoke, it is never too late to quit. Ask for information if you need help quitting.

Contact your primary healthcare provider if:

  • Your symptoms get worse or they keep you from doing your daily activities.

  • You have an injury that has caused your varicose veins to bleed underneath your skin.

  • You have a rash on your leg.

  • Your symptoms keep you from doing your daily activities.

  • You have questions or concerns about your condition or care.

Return to the emergency department if:

  • You have a wound that does not heal or is infected.

  • You have an injury that has broken your skin and caused your varicose veins to bleed.

  • Your leg is swollen and hard.

  • You have pain in your leg that does not go away or gets worse.

  • You notice that your legs or feet are turning blue or black.

  • Your leg feels warm, tender, and painful. It may look swollen and red.

© 2015 Truven Health Analytics Inc. Information is for End User's use only and may not be sold, redistributed or otherwise used for commercial purposes. All illustrations and images included in CareNotes® are the copyrighted property of A.D.A.M., Inc. or Truven Health Analytics.

The above information is an educational aid only. It is not intended as medical advice for individual conditions or treatments. Talk to your doctor, nurse or pharmacist before following any medical regimen to see if it is safe and effective for you.

Learn more about Varicose Veins (Aftercare Instructions)

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