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14/Dec/2018

Does running cause varicose veins? Do runners with varicose veins underperform? Does running regularly help with the symptoms of running? If you are a runner and are worried about varicose veins, or perhaps suffer from this common condition and are thinking about taking up running to help alleviate symptoms, take a look some of the ways varicose veins can impact running and vice-versa.

What are varicose veins and what causes them?

Varicose veins are swollen veins which tend to be purple or bluish in colour. These swollen veins using occur in the legs.

Varicose veins are caused by weakened valves in the veins which causes the blood to collect in the legs and pressure to build up. The veins then become large, twisted and weak.

If you suffer from varicose veins should you run?

As long as you are not in any pain or discomfort from the swollen veins, you can keep running. It is wise to run on softer terrain such as grass or an athletics track to soften the movement. You should wear well-cushioned trainers to absorb some of the shock running causes on the legs.

Can running help varicose veins?

Exercise like running improves the blood circulation, stimulating blood flow in the arm and legs, as well as building strength. Whilst low-impact exercise such as cycling and walking is generally better suited to sufferers of varicose veins, running can help improve the circulation of the blood and build strength in the legs.

As mentioned above, if you are running and have varicose veins, try and make your runs as low-impact as possible.

Seek medical treatment for varicose veins

If you are serious about running and suffer from varicose veins, it could be that the condition is hampering your running performance. It was recently reported in the Daily Mail that a 60-year-old runner was able to jog longer distances after having cosmetic surgery to remove her varicose veins.

If you are concerned about varicose veins and running or any type of sport or exercise, it is advisable to seek advice from a medical professional.

The Vascular Consultancy can provide advice on what types of treatment for this common vascular condition would be right for you.

Get in touch with the Vascular Consultancy team today to discuss your vein health concerns and queries.


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14/Dec/2018

Due to the strain surplus weight puts on the body, obesity has long been associated with putting people at risk of developing certain cancers, heart disease and diabetes. Carrying around dangerously high amounts of fat can also lead to leg problems, including venous disease, lymphedema, circulation problems, varicose veins and issues with the feet.

Varicose veins

Obesity and an inactive lifestyle is linked to causing varicose veins and worsening the condition. Research shows that people who are severely overweight are at greater risk of developing varicose veins. Whilst the exact reason for this remains unclear, it is believed to be due to the fact that obesity negatively affects the blood circulation.

As excessive weight is implicated with a lack of exercise and an immobile lifestyle, the blood does not circulate round the body as efficiently as it should.

As both varicose veins and spider veins are primarily circulatory problems, becoming more active, losing weight and improving the blood circulation, can help prevent the onset of varicose veins and other leg problems.

Blood clots

The risk of developing blood clots, or Deep Vein Thrombosis, is also implicated with obesity. Sitting for long periods, inactive lifestyles and failing to get adequate exercise, means the blood struggles to reach the heart. Consequently, the blood can pool, increasing the risk of clots being formed.

Again, losing weight and becoming more active can improve the circulation, thus making us less prone to blood clots.

Lymphedema

Lymphedema occurs when the body pools excessive amounts of lymph fluid in the subcutaneous space. The swelling is most typically seen in the legs and arms, though can affect other parts of the body.

According to a study in the New England Journal of Medicine, 75% of lymphedema incidents are caused by obesity. Excessive fat deposits create pressure on the lymph channels in the body. Such fatty deposits can cause inflammation, which can destroy the lymph vessels, and increase the risk of lymphedema.

Adopting a healthier lifestyle, which combines a well-balanced, low fat diet with exercise, can make us less susceptible to being at risk of vascular conditions and leg problems.

If you would like to advice about treatment for varicose veins and other leg problems, get in touch with the Vascular Consultancy, specialists in treating vascular conditions.


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14/Dec/2018

Spiders veins, known medically as telangiectasias, are clusters of small blood vessels which develop near the surface of the skin. These tiny vessels are typically purple, red or blue in appearance and resemble a spider’s web, hence their name.

This common condition is caused by structural abnormalities of the blood vessels, which can be caused by poor blood circulation.

Whilst spiders’ veins can be treated, typically by compression stockings to help improve the circulation by increasing pressure in the legs, a regular exercise program and weight loss can help reduce the symptoms of spiders’ veins.

Walking

Walking is one of the best exercises you can do to help improve the symptoms of spider’s veins. This low-impact exercise strengthens and stretches the leg muscles and improves the flow of blood. Walking at a fairly brisk pace regularly can significantly improve the condition of the veins.

Cycling

The motion of cycling works out the calf muscles, thereby improving the calf pump blood flow. Whether it’s on an outdoor bike or a stationary one, cycling is a great form of exercise for improving spider’s veins and vascular health. The great thing about cycling is that, unlike other types of exercise, it doesn’t jolt the joints or bones.

Yoga

Yoga stretches the muscles and gets the blood moving around the body, boosting our overall circulation. Many yoga stretches require the legs to be raised above the heart, which helps the blood drain from the lower legs, and by doing so improving circulation and alleviating symptoms associated with spider’s veins.

Jogging

Jogging at a gentler pace than running gives the circulation a kick start without the negative implications to the bones and joints running can cause. Jogging helps the blood pump up from the legs, eliminate toxins and give our hearts a healthy workhout. By improving the blood circulation, jogging can be a great form of exercise to help combat problems associated with spider’s veins.

If you would like to talk to a vascular health expert about spider’s veins or other vascular problems, get in touch with the Vascular Consultancy, specialists in treating vascular conditions.


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14/Dec/2018

It is not uncommon for child to sweat during the night. When the sweating is severe, it is referred to a condition known as hyperhidrosis. There are numerous causes of excessive sweating amongst children during the night.

Below are some of the most common causes of hyperhidrosis in children.

Obesity

Children who are severely overweight can be prone to sweating profusely at night as well as during the day. Carrying extra weight and a lack of physical activity can cause obese children to sweat heavily.

Though not all sweating is weight-related and can often be the sign of a medical condition.

Fever

If a child is feverish, the body temperature often increases, leading to excessive sweating, particularly during the night.

Tuberculosis

Tuberculosis (TB) results from the infection of bacteria which is transmitted through the air by an infected person. TB usually affects the lungs, though it can affect other organs in the body as well.

One common symptom of TB in both children and adults is excessive sweating, which is usually the result of changes in the body’s thermoregulatory system. Night sweating in TB patients is also believed to be the result of the production of cytokine by specific cells of the immune system.

Cancer

Hyperhidrosis can also occur in the early stages of cancer with children. Lymphoma is a type of cancer which causes excessive sweating at night.

Emotional conditions

Anxiety, stress and other emotional conditions can lead to children sweating profusely during the night.

Oral medications for excessive sweating in children can be used as a form of treatment, including oxybutynin hydrochloride, glycopyrrolate and propantheline. However, many doctors’ advice that treatment should be more moderate until a child reaches teenage years. If the sweating is caused by an emotional condition, seeking psychological help to address the root of the condition would be advisable.

If you have any queries or concerns about hyperhidrosis and other vascular conditions in children or adults, get in touch with Daryll baker, a Consultant Vascular Surgeon. Daryll Baker runs a vascular practice in both the NHS and privately, helping patients with vascular conditions from across Europe and the Middle East.


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14/Dec/2018

Varicose veins, they’re unsightly and a nuisance, but they’re not life-threatening, right? Not necessarily. According to a study published recently on The JAMA Network, varicose veins could be a warning sign for potentially deadly clots known as deep vein thrombosis.

The Association of Varicose Veins With Incident Venous Thromboemolism and Peripheral Artery Disease report involved analysing the health records of more than 425,000 adults. The study concluded that varicose veins are strongly associated with deep venous thrombosis, clots which form in the deep veins of the body.

Half of the patients in the research had varicose veins and half didn’t. It found that the group of patients with varicose veins had higher incident rates for deep vein thrombosis. According to Dr. Shyueluen Chang, first author of the study:

“[Varicose veins patients] had about a five times greater risk of developing deep vein thrombosis than the other group.”

Despite the findings of the study, the researchers say that more needs to be done to understand the relationship between whether varicose veins directly result in blood clots forming, or whether the two conditions merely have a similar origin.

Varicose veins, which are typically caused by age and the weakening of the blood vessels, pregnancy and obesity, are rarely associated with serious health risks, unlike other vascular diseases, such as deep vein thrombosis (DVT), which can pose as a more serious health risk.

DVT usually occurs in a deep leg vein, which runs through the muscles of the thigh and the calf. The clot can cause swelling and pain and can lead to serious conditions such as pulmonary embolism. A pulmonary embolism refers to when a piece of the blood clot breaks off and goes into the bloodstream, blocking a blood vessel in the lungs.

If you are worried at all about varicose veins or other vascular conditions, it is wise to seek advice from a doctor or a specialist in vascular health to discuss the condition and the best form of treatment.

The vascular vein experts at the Vascular Consultancy can offer you advice about the common conditions that affect the health of the veins and what would be the best type of treatment for you.


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14/Dec/2018

While the winter offers some respite for many suffering from varicose veins as it allows them to cover the unsightly veins up, the condition can be aggravated during the colder months. The winter can also lead to vein issues occurring, such as spider veins.

So, why exactly does the cold weather of winter negatively affect our vein health, causing or aggravating varicose veins and other vein conditions?

Less inclined to exercise in the winter

As the cold weather bites, it can be tempting to curl back under the duvet during the winter rather than going for a run! A decreased level of activity during the winter can mean varicose veins can get worse.

Walking is regarded as being one of the best forms of exercise there is to help prevent varicose veins. So, even if you don’t feel like putting on your trainers and pounding the streets on a five-mile run, practising brisk walking regularly throughout the winter can help prevent the onset of varicose veins or stop the condition getting worse.

Comfort eating

As easy it is to refrain from exercising in the winter, it is to reach for stodgy comfort food, for a quick ‘energy’ fix. Our diet can have a direct affect on the condition of our veins. Instead of reaching for sugary or fatty snacks, try to maintain a diet that is rich in fibre and has plenty of fruits and vegetables.

A high-fibre diet can help you keep to a healthy weight and prevent varicose veins from occurring or the condition worsening. Similarly, eating plenty of fruit and vegetables boosts the antioxidants in the body, and by doing so, makes the veins stronger.

An alteration in atmospheric pressure

Extremely cold weather leads to temporary changes in the atmosphere, which can have a negative impact on the body. The alteration in the atmospheric pressure can make the body feel heavier and, as a result, reduce the efficiency of the blood circulation. Poor blood circulation is implicated with the occurring of varicose veins.

To maintain good vein health and, by doing so, help prevent varicose veins and other vascular conditions occur on the skin or worsen, it is important to exercise regularly and have a good diet all year round, particularly during the winter.

If you are concerned about varicose veins or other conditions affecting the veins and would like to speak to an expert in vascular health, get in contact with Daryll Baker at the Vascular Consultancy, a leading UK specialist in providing advice, diagnosis and treatment options for conditions affecting the veins.


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14/Dec/2018

The New Year is traditionally a time when we take stock of our lives and aim to make improvements to our health. The vascular system – the heart, veins, arteries and circulation – is an element of our health that should never be overlooked. Maintaining good vascular health is essential for keeping the body working properly and staving off disease.

If this year comes with aspirations to improve your health, making the effort to keep the vascular system working well would be a good place to start. Take a look at the following ways to improve your vascular health in 2018.

Give up smoking

Smoking is one of the leading preventable cause of premature death in the U.K. Tobacco smokers are at a higher risk of developing vascular problems that can lead to chronic diseases. Smoking causes fatty build-ups to clog the arteries, which can lead to several types of cancer, peripheral arterial disease (PAD), and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease.

If you smoke, one of the best ways to improve your vascular health in 2018 is to give up the habit.

Improve your blood circulation

A healthy vascular system relies on a healthy flow of blood around the body. One of the most effective ways to get the blood flowing freely is to carry out regular exercise. Whether it’s joining a gym, taking the dog for a walk, or going on jogs, regular exercise will improve blood circulation, promote the growth of new blood vessels and help improve and maintain good vascular health.

Eat a low cholesterol diet

Eating a healthy diet that is low in saturated fat and cholesterol will reduce the risk of plaque building up in the arteries. A plaque build-up in the arteries prevents the blood flowing to and from the vessels and can cause a disease known as atherosclerosis.

Lose weight

As Allina Health notes, for every pound of fat, the heart has to pump blood through what equates to an extra mile’s worth of blood vessels. If you are overweight, losing weight and maintaining a healthy weight through a sensible diet and regular exercise, will help keep the vascular system in a good working condition.

Keep an eye on your blood pressure

High blood pressure can lead to arterial damage, putting you at risk of heart failure, kidney damage, a heart attack and a stroke. Blood pressure should be no higher than 140/90. Carrying out regular exercise, eating a healthy balanced diet and maintaining a good weight, will help keep your blood pressure at a normal rate.

If you need more advice about vascular health and treatment for certain vascular conditions, get in touch with the vascular experts at The Vascular Consultancy.


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14/Dec/2018

By delivering the blood around the body to the heart, veins are a crucial part of our circulatory system and healthy veins are important for maintaining optimum health and wellbeing. A balanced diet that includes certain vitamins and minerals helps keep the veins healthy. But which vitamins are most effective in improving and maintaining the condition of our veins?

Vitamin E

Vitamin E helps the blood to flow through the veins without obstruction and is an effective vitamin for the prevention of blood clumping together and clots forming in the veins.

Vitamin E supplements can be taken to boost levels of this vital mineral. As can eating Vitamin E-rich food, such as green leafy vegetable, nuts and eggs.

Vitamin B

By helping to balance cholesterol levels, vitamin B is another important mineral for promoting vein health. B vitamins, including riboflavin, thiamine, folic acid, niacin, vitamin B6, vitamin B12, pantothenic acid and biotin, strengthen blood vessels and are associated with helping to treat and prevent unwanted vascular conditions such as varicose veins.

Foods with high levels of the B vitamins include, bananas, lentils, potatoes, beans, many meat products, and unprocessed food, such as wheat and brown rice.

Vitamin C

Vitamin C builds elastin and collagen in the skin, which keeps the blood vessels and skin flexible and strong. These elastin and collagen fibres enables the veins to be less susceptible to pressure and help prevent valves from leaking.

Vitamin C can be found naturally in many fruits and vegetables, including oranges, tomatoes and broccoli.

Vitamin K

Vitamin K is another important vitamin in the promotion of healthy veins. Inadequate levels of vitamin K has been attributed to the cause of varicose veins. It is believed that sufficient levels of vitamin K in the diet can help prevent vascular problems from arising, such as varicose veins.

Vitamin K is found naturally in certain food, such as green leafy vegetables like spinach, lettuce and broccoli.

If you have any questions or concerns about the health of your veins or about any vascular conditions like varicose veins, get in touch with the Vascular Consultancy, specialists in promoting and maintaining optimum vein health.


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Daryll Baker is a Consultant Vascular Surgeon at the Royal Free Hospital London and Clinical Lead for North Central Region Vascular Services.

He read Medicine at Oxford University and trained in Vascular Surgery in Nottingham, London and Edinburgh. He obtained his research PhD from the University of Wales.

Contact

Wellington Hospital
34 Circus Road
London
NW8 9SG

020 7722 7370

Copyright 2016 The Vascular Consultancy