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Physical Activity Capacity and Level in Patients with Chronic Venous Insufficiency and Varicose Veins

  • 07

    By Katherine Kozlowski, Medical author and contributor to Vein News and VeinsVeinsVeins.com

    Literature is limited with regard to the exercise capacity and physical activity level in patients with varicose veins and chronic venous insufficiency (CVI).


    Researchers determined the differences in physical activity capacity between patients with chronic venous insufficiency and varicose veins and healthy controls.





    51 patients diagnosed with CVI and varicose veins were included.

    51 patients without varicose veins or CVI were included as well.





    Patients’ pain levels were assessed using the visual analog scale (VAS*).

    Capacity to exercise was assessed using the 6-minute walk test.

    Individual physical activity levels were assessed using the International Physical Activity Questionnaire (IPAQ**).





    VAS was significantly higher in the group with CVI and varicose veins compared to the control group.


    Patients in the control group covered greater distance during the 6-minute walk test.


    Patients in the control group had higher IPAQ (walking AND total score) compared with patients with CVI and varicose veins (p<.05).





    The authors believe physical activity is beneficial for patients with CVI, and that these results will lead the planning of interventions to increase physical activity levels in patients with CVI.



    *VAS = A scale (usually from 1-10) to determine how a person perceives their pain or attitude at a given point in time.


    **IPAQ = A 5-part questionnaire to determine how much physical activity a person performs as part of their everyday lives, including nature of their work, walking, transportation, housework, leisure, sitting time, etc.





    Erdal E, Demirgüç A, Kabalci M et al. Evaluation of physical activity level and exercise capacity in patients with varicose veins and chronic venous insufficiency. Phlebology 2021; 36(8)636-643.


    Link to IPAQ: https://snaped.fns.usda.gov/library/materials/international-physical-activity-questionnaire-ipaq