The human being is the only mammal affected by this condition. What explains this particularity? It’s simply due to our biped status. The gravitational force naturally draws blood to the legs, it is to the heart that comes back the difficult task of pumping the blood upward to oxygenate and redistribute it in the rest of the body.
Unfortunately, over time, some people develop venous problems that prevent the good circulation of blood from the legs to the heart. Stagnant blood in the legs will cause other complications.
Circulatory problems often result in leg disorders. The heart struggles to diffuse or receive blood in the lower limbs of the human body. This results in three types of disorders that are interdependent on each other, most often: varicose vein, heavy leg and venous insufficiency.
Chronic venous insufficiency of the lower extremities is one of the most frequent affections in the industrialized countries. There is still very little data on the prevalence of this condition, but according to some university studies, in 1998, nearly 22 million United States people had problems with venous circulation and about 12 million had varicose veins.
Causes of poor blood circulation
Veins and arteries are like highways: long and busy. And they too are experiencing slowdowns and traffic jams. 4 liters of blood circulate in an adult body.
Our blood must arrive at its destination to oxygenate the different parts of the body, then return to the heart, from our calves. A real feat, often undermined by our way of life.
Venous insufficiency results in poor venous return. The blood circulating in the veins of the lower limbs presents difficulties to go back to the heart. This condition most often results from a loss of elasticity and tonicity of the veins, as well as a dysfunction of the valves on the venous wall which have the role of preventing reflux, or, in other words, to help the blood go back to the heart.
When standing, the blood must fight against the pressure of gravity to go up to the heart but in case of venous disease, the blood stagnates in the veins of the lower limbs.
The consequences of poor blood circulation can have long-term, serious repercussions on a person’s state of health. It is important to recognize the symptoms in order to consult as quickly as possible.
Feelings of heavy legs
Heavy legs are called when the lower limbs appear heavy, tense and particularly sensitive to fatigue. These sensations of heaviness concern essentially the calves.
The sensation of heavy legs results in cramps, ants in the legs and sometimes bruises on the skin. This is due to poor blood circulation and can sometimes lead to the appearance of varicose veins. Heavy legs also translate muscle fatigue, we feel that we weigh after a day of walking. But it can be heavy for us too after a day sitting!
The sensation of pain in the leg is due to stagnation of the blood in the leg, which may be due to a lack of activity, or a general problem of blood circulation, such as venous insufficiency.
To understand where this feeling of heaviness comes from, one must first know how the venous system of the legs works. In the legs, blood circulation is favored by plantar hunting. When walking, this compresses the vessels of the underside of the foot and propels the blood upwards.
This phenomenon is then relayed by the muscles of the calves which by contracting allow the blood to continue its ascent. But all these efforts are only useful if the blood does not descend inexorably under the effect of gravity. To prevent this, the veins are equipped with non-return valves called valves.
But when these valves are defective we speak then of venous insufficiency, the blood stagnates in the legs: that is what causes the sensation of heavy legs.
In addition to causing discomfort, varicose veins can become very painful and conspicuous. It is the women who are most often affected because of many hormonal changes, but it happens to meet men who may suffer as well.
A varicose vein is a sick vein. It is a dilated vein sometimes up to a few millimeters, deformed and affecting the blood circulation permanently. Inside the vein, blood reflux is blocked by the weakening of the small cavities (valves) that they contain, causing a malfunction of blood pumping to the heart.
There are several types of varicose veins, but the most common are those located in the legs. Some people may experience this problem in the feet, hands or face, but this condition is rather rare. Varicose veins appear in their fifties and nearly a third of the population suffers.
Varicose veins are those little purplish blue vessels that appear under the skin. These are actually your blood vessels that are more noticeable than others. These small marks under the skin, considered unattractive, are often painless. But sometimes they happen if we do not look for the cause of the problem quickly.
Varicose veins are therefore “diseased” veins, which are dilated and damaged because of progressive deformation of the blood vessel. This may be due to heredity, age, or hormonal upheaval. But it is also a lifestyle: being sedentary and never stretching your legs can cause the phenomenon of varicose veins.
Erectile dysfunction, commonly known as impotence or erectile dysfunction, can have several origins, both mental and organic, but it always results in poor circulation of blood in the penis.
Since vascular disorders are not confined to a single organ, erectile dysfunction must be taken seriously, as an alert likely to announce the occurrence of other diseases. In such a situation, limiting oneself to treating only the symptom by swallowing pills may well be a mistake.
Compared to the healthy male population, the risk of developing coronary heart disease is 80% highest in men with erectile dysfunction. Conversely, in the presence of type 2 diabetes and asymptomatic coronary heart disease, the risk of suffering from impotence is 900% highest! The obvious link between the two diseases, though very narrow, is unfortunately too often neglected.