Leg pain can occur due to a number of causes, but often circulatory problems are to blame. Circulation problems may occur in the veins or arteries of the legs. While some conditions are relatively harmless, other can become life-threatening and should be diagnosed by a doctor.
A number of circulatory conditions can cause pain in the legs, including deep vein thrombosis, intermittent claudication, thrombophlebitis and varicose veins. Many causes are due to an underlying heart disease.
Other than leg pain, the Mayo Clinic says that some of the symptoms of a circulatory problem that is due to heart disease may include weakness, coldness or numbness in the legs. Other conditions, such as varicose veins, may include inflammation and swelling.
Diagnosing the underlying cause of leg pain is essential to finding the appropriate treatment. In some cases, addressing the heart disease can alleviate leg pain if the blood flow is restricted due to narrowing of the arteries. In other cases, surgery may be required.
Medical website, Vascularweb.com, says that people who want to prevent leg pain due to circulatory issues should stop smoking, get enough exercise and lower cholesterol and blood pressure.
The Mayo Clinic says to seek immediate medical attention if life-threatening symptoms occur, such as shortness of breath, chest pain that gets worse upon inhalation or coughing, or dizziness or fainting. These symptoms may indicate a blood clot in the lungs.