One problem that tends to concern people with varicose veins is their vulnerability to injury. Varicose veins can stick out from the skin, leaving them prone to cuts, scrapes, and bruises — and if one isn’t careful, these minor injuries can have major consequences.
We’ve vein professionals working in the Milwaukee, Wisconsin area, and in our many years of experience, we’ve witnessed vein injuries of all kinds. In this article, we’ll detail what to do if you accidentally bruise or cut your varicose veins before telling you how you can prevent further injuries.
I’ve Injured a Varicose Vein. What Should I Do?
Note: If your veins are currently bleeding profusely, call 911 or seek nearby medical attention immediately. As previously noted, varicose vein bleeding can be dangerous if not promptly dealt with!
If you’ve simply bruised a varicose vein, don’t panic. While bumping a varicose vein can lead to some severe looking bruises — even if you don’t even notice when the bump occurs — it usually is no cause for concern. Apply ice and elevate the injury and avoid disturbing it further. If discoloration becomes severe, seek medical assistance.
This procedure is similar for cuts and scrapes. If you have a minor scrape on a varicose vein, simply apply light pressure to the injury and, if possible, elevate it above your head. This can be accomplished while lying down by elevating your leg with a pillow. Continue to apply pressure and elevate until the bleeding slows, then bandage to prevent future injury.
If the wound scabs over, be sure to not pick at the scab, otherwise you risk reopening the injury and causing further bleeding.
Why Are Varicose Veins So Easy To Injure?
You may have noticed that you formed a bruise on your varicose vein more easily than expected, or that a scrape on your varicose vein produced significantly more blood than a comparable injury to somewhere else on your body, like your arms or fingers.
Varicose veins are already overfilled with blood, making them prime targets for bruising. When you bump them, they will more easily form a bruise than other parts of your body.
As far as bleeding is concerned, varicose veins bleed more than other injuries because veins contain more blood than your capillaries, and if they’re injured, that blood can come rushing out.
Normally, this isn’t an issue, as your veins are typically covered by a protective layer of thick skin. However, once you develop varicose veins, the skin protecting those veins becomes less protective, and the veins themselves become more susceptible to injury.
Injury to varicose veins can happen at any time, though the inciting incidents for varicose veins injuries are typically minor, such as bumping one’s leg against furniture or scraping one’s leg while wearing shorts.
Another common time when varicose vein injuries can occur is in the shower as warm water causes the veins to dilate, leaving them more prone to injury.
Sometimes, bleeding can be difficult to stop. In these cases, it is essential that you visit a hospital as you risk losing an unsafe amount of blood. When this happens, a doctor will stop the bleeding and give you instructions to prevent the wound from reopening, usually including keeping it covered and preventing you from walking while the injury heals.
How Do I Prevent Future Varicose Vein Injuries?
The only effective way to prevent varicose vein injuries is getting rid of your varicose veins altogether.
Thankfully, doing so is easier than you might think.
Vein treatments have evolved considerably in recent years, and today, getting your veins treated is a simple and relatively painless procedure. In fact, most of the people we treat in our clinic can return to work on the same day as their treatment.
Everybody’s veins are different, which is why we don’t take a one-size-fits-all approach. We work with our clients to find the best procedure for their needs, adjusting our procedures and schedules to fit client specifications.
If you are interested in taking care of your varicose veins for good, get in touch with us via our contact page.