While pain is a common complaint of chronic venous insufficiency (CVI), it is not the only bothersome symptom that can plague patients. Some individuals experience intense itching and tingling in the legs and feet, particularly when lying down at night or after standing for long periods during the day.
Excessive blood that pools in the legs can cause itching because it is low in oxygen and high in lactic acid, metabolites, and other free radicals. This combination creates a toxic environment in which nearby skin cells are unable to regenerate properly due to a lack of nutrition. The result is itchy, flakey, and/or leathery-looking skin.
Who Is at Risk?
Women over 50 are at the greatest risk of developing CVI and the itching legs that are associated with it. Additional risk factors include obesity, pregnancy, high blood pressure, and a family history of CVI. Individuals who live a sedentary lifestyle or spend the majority of their day on their feet are also at a greater risk of developing CVI.
How Do You Treat Itching Legs?
For many with itching legs, finding immediate relief is important. Anti-itch ointments that can be applied directly to the surface of the skin can offer quick relief, especially at night. To help improve your symptoms, we recommend elevating your legs several times a day for 15-30 minutes at a time, which will improve blood flow. Compression stockings gently squeeze to help move blood up the legs, which can help prevent blood pooling and temporarily relieve itchiness.
Ultimately, if you have CVI, you will need to have treatment to experience lasting relief. We offer several minimally invasive procedures, including:
- Ambulatory phlebectomy
- Ultrasound-guided sclerotherapy
- Endovenous radiofrequency ablation (RFA)
At the Vein Wellness Clinic, we can help you discover the treatment option that is right for you. Give us a call today!