blood pumped from the heart to
the rest of the body. Veins carry
blood from the tissues back to
the heart. Veins are thin walled
tubes and rely on the surrounding
muscles to contract and squeeze
This squeezing forces the blood
up toward the heart because of
a series of one way valves. If
these valves do not work (incompetence)
then the blood runs backward (reflux).
causes pooling of the blood in
the veins close to the skin and
the bulging, tortuous varicose
There are two types of veins in
the leg: the deep system and the
superficial system. The superficial
veins are smaller and are just
under the skin. These drain into
the deep system through one major
vein- the greater saphenous vein.
This vein runs from the groin,
down your inner thigh and all
the way to your ankle. The failure
of the greater saphenous' valves
is a major cause of varicose veins.
This means that the varicose veins
on the lower thigh, around the
knee and in the calf are usually
caused by a failure of the valves
much higher up.
Unless these hidden veins are
treated, it is difficult if not
impossible to achieve the desired
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