Varicose Veins – Problem Symptoms Causes Treatment As Per Ayurveda And Traditional Healing Methods
Varicose veins are the enlarged, swollen and twisted veins, appears to be dark purple or blue in colour, often seen on the lower legs.
Ayurveda terms it as siraj granthi or sira kautilya. The root caused is vitiation of Vata dosha, especially Vyan Vata which maintains the circulation of Rasa and Rakta in the body. Vitiation of Vyan Vata causes sira kathinya, i.e. reduction in vein elasticity and valve dysfunctions. The improper blood circulation towards heart against gravity causes stagnation of blood in lower leg, resulting into tortuous, swollen, enlarged veins. Prolonged stagnation of blood vitiates the Ranjak Pitta (responsible for maintaining the normal health of blood) and result in Rakta Dushtis (blood impurities) like discolouration of the skin around varicose vein, burning sensation, ulcers, etc.
Cause of Varicose vein
Activities or conditions that put excessive pressure on the legs or abdomen can lead to varicose vein. Some of the common factors are:
- Prolong standing (common among teachers, surgeon)
- Chronic constipation
Symptoms of Varicose Vein
The main and most common symptom of varicose veins is discoloration (purple or blue), enlargement and swelling in veins around the lower leg areas. The varicose veins look similar to spider veins, seen in superficial small veins with reddish discoloration.
Other uncommon symptoms includes:
- Throbbing pain and burning sensation in legs
- Intense pain after prolong sitting or standing
- Itching around the affected area
- Blackish skin discoloration
- Painful ulcers around the affected area
- Blood clots and bleeding
Management of Varicose Vein
Although the root cause of varicose veins is Vata. Rasa, Rakta and Mamsa dhatu (elements) are involved in this condition; hence, the treatment primarily focuses on pacifying Vata vyadhi, along with balancing the above mentioned three dhatus. For mild to normal symptoms, the treatment includes instillation of oils via snehana, swedan (pottlisweda) and basti to pacify vata dosha. The external treatment is supported by medications, healthy diet and ligation of veins during standing, walking.
To address the condition in rather acute stages, Siravedh is used as a treatment. In case of more complications like ulcers, intense skin discoloration (symptoms of ranjak pitta imbalance), pitta pacifying and rakta shodhan medicine and karma like lepam are used. This is supported by Vata-Pitta pacifying, easy to digest, fresh diet as well as exercise, posture, and ligation techniques.