The beginning of motherhood, one of the most valuable phenomena that nature has presented to women. The 40-week process in which the first and strongest bonds are established with the child who has not yet met. As far as we men can understand, it is a temporary period that has an organic structure but also some deep psychological foundations, but causes radical changes in women’s lives.
Pregnancy is an extremely complex and almost partially pathological period. I’m talking about a 40-week period when the hormonal balances and patterns that women are used to are upside down, and as a result, some changes occur in their bodies, and many physiological balances are tried to be temporarily restored with their children growing in their wombs. In addition to all these visible changes, some changes in daily life that develop with the change in the physical structure in the later stages of pregnancy, such physical changes that occur in a very short time in the body, the new balance that is tried to be established in social and business life as a pregnant and a mother-to-be, an unusual new situation. Not to mention the psychological effects of the temporary hormonal order and the combination of the experiences while getting used to the idea of being a “mother”.
As a vascular surgeon, I must emphasize that the focus of vascular health during pregnancy is vein health. Veins are the vessels that carry the blood used by the tissues in the body to the heart. The flow characteristic in these veins is different from the active flow in the arteries and occurs passively. The thrust of the current in the arteries and the suction power of the heart are the most important factors in providing this current. However, while the “milking effect” caused by the contraction and relaxation of the muscles in the legs is one of the most important contributing factors to the blood flow, gravity and various factors that will prevent the blood flow along the course of the veins are the factors that threaten the health of the veins.
Pregnancy is a risky period for venous health. Especially; Women with risk factors that trigger the formation of varicose disease such as familial factors, sedentary life, occupational predispositions should be more careful during pregnancy. In this 40-week period, the last 3-4 months of pregnancy are especially important when the baby grows and starts to take up more space in the abdomen. In this period, due to the increased intra-abdominal pressure, the flow in the leg veins against gravity becomes more challenging. However, in some pregnancies, as a result of the pressure of a part of the baby’s body (such as the head, arm or leg) on the veins in the abdomen, deterioration in the vein flow may occur. Especially in the last 2-3 months, when the physical conditions become more difficult, movement becomes more difficult, and social life is more limited, when inactivity is added to the above factors, the conditions that will threaten the vein health become more evident. Less movement in this period means the loss of one of the contributing factors to the venous flow, which accelerates and becomes active as a result of the contraction of the leg muscles.
Varicose veins is a disease that occurs during 2 out of every 5 pregnancies and then progresses because it is ignored. In addition to complaints such as pain, tingling, restlessness, itching in the legs that may be encountered in this process, leg swelling is also a common complaint. Again, depending on the reasons I mentioned above, flow problems that will develop in the veins, when combined with hormonal changes, which is a natural process of the pregnancy period, the risk of developing thrombosis in the deep veins of the legs arises. For all these reasons, women who have risk factors for varicose disease or who have varicose disease known before pregnancy should be followed up regularly by a specialist vascular surgeon during pregnancy. These routine follow-ups and controls ensure that problems that may arise are detected at an early stage or even before they occur.
Drug use should be restricted as much as possible during pregnancy, which is a very important process for the healthy development of the baby. However, it is already known that the role of drugs in the treatment of varicose disease is small. In order to reduce or eliminate the complaints that may arise during pregnancy, there are a number of arrangements that should be made as a priority. move as much as possible during the day; Doing sports that can be done during pregnancy, such as walking and swimming, avoiding sitting for a long time or standing still, and if possible, sitting without hanging your feet during the sitting period are the most basic precautions that can be taken. These stockings, which are non-pressurized in the abdominal region, must be used after a vascular surgical examination and under the control of a physician.
Most of the vein problems experienced during pregnancy can be prevented with regular follow-up. In order not to spend your pregnancy period, which is one of the most beautiful periods of your life, with vein diseases, first listen to yourself and consult a vascular surgeon if you have any problems.
I wish you a healthy pregnancy period.