• Stock #999-9 (90 capsules)
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Varicose veins, which afflict nearly 15% of all adults, are the most common of all venous disorders (vein problems). Unfortunately, the frequency of varicose veins increases as people age—greater than 50% of those over 50 are likely to develop some degree of varicosity, with women more often affected than men.1,2

A varicose vein is a damaged or weakened superficial blood vessel that appears to be twisted or enlarged and bulging. Varicose veins are often accompanied by itching skin over the vein, as well as achiness, cramps and swelling in the lower legs. Varicose veins are thought to be caused primarily by a weakening of the vein wall, but may also be the result of blood vessel valve dysfunction or blood flow that is too slow. In any case, varicose veins are unable to effectively pump blood back up to the heart, resulting in the pooling of blood in the legs and in increase in pressure on weakened veins. Not surprisingly, varicose veins most often occur on the inside and back of legs; however, they can be found in other parts of the body, such as the rectum—hemorrhoids are rectal veins that have become “varicosed.”1,3

As with all venous disorders, the best method of treatment is prevention and early intervention, particularly since varicose and spider veins (thread-like varicose veins that are finer and much less swollen) are progressive in nature. It is estimated that roughly 60-80% of individuals with varicose veins, and 90% of those with spider veins, have a positive family history of venous disorders. Other factors that can lead to varicose veins include obesity, pregnancy, prolonged standing or lifting, and hormonal changes—elevated estrogen levels (associated with oral contraceptives, pregnancy and estrogen replacement therapy) can increase one’s chances of developing spider and varicose veins.1,2

NSP’s Vari-Gone is a powerful herbal and nutritional supplement designed to strengthen and tone vein walls, improve blood circulation, and reduce the itching, swelling and achiness associated with varicose veins. Each two capsules of Vari-Gone provides horse chestnut seed extract (300mg), standardized to contain 20% aescin; butcher’s broom root extract (50mg), standardized to contain 8.5% ruscogenins; rutin (200mg); hesperidin (200mg); lemon bioflavonoids (200mg); and ascorbic acid (97mg).

Horse chestnut seed extract (HCSE) has been used extensively in Europe for both preventing and treating varicose veins and other venous disorders. Standardized HCSE has been safely used in controlled clinical trials involving over 700 patients and is approved for long-term use. In fact, the German Commission E has endorsed HCSE for the treatment of chronic venous insufficiency (CVI) and feelings of heaviness in the legs.1,3,4

HCSE tones and strengthens blood vessels and inhibits the action of enzymes that can damage capillary walls. HCSE also speeds blood flow through the veins, reduces achiness and fatigue in the legs, and prevents edema formation by decreasing capillary filtration and sealing vein walls. A study published in The Lancet found that HCSE was as effective as compression stocking therapy for edema resulting from CVI. In addition, a systematic review of double-blind, randomized controlled trials of oral HCSE for patients with CVI confirmed that HCSE was equally effective as reference medications. HCSE is standardized to contain the active ingredient aescin (also called escin), which has been shown to provide strong anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties, as well as the ability to increase venous tone.1,3-9

HCSE is not recommended for pregnant or nursing women until the effects are studied. In addition, HCSE is contraindicated for individuals with existing kidney or liver impairment or bleeding disorders. Due to the natural content of coumarin derivatives, HCSE should be used with caution by those taking aspirin, warfarin or other anticoagulants, as the effects of such medications may be enhanced.1,4,5,10,11

Butcher’s broom root extract provides vasoconstrictive (blood vessel-narrowing) and anti-inflammatory properties that have been shown to be beneficial for treating leg edema, varicose veins and peripheral vascular disorders. Researchers attribute these effects to active ingredients known as ruscogenins. In addition, German researchers have shown that butcher’s broom extract increased venous tone and reduced blood-pooling in the lower leg.2,4,12

Butcher’s broom extract is not recommended for pregnant or nursing women, since the effects have yet to be studied. Possible contraindications may exist for those taking medication for hypertension or benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH).4

Rutin, hesperidin and lemon bioflavonoids (all belonging to the family of flavonoids) are polyphenolic antioxidants found in fruits and vegetables. Flavonoids protect against free-radical damage, strengthen capillary walls, reduce inflammation, and facilitate the absorption and function of vitamin C. Flavonoids are extremely beneficial for treating vascular diseases such as varicose veins.13,14

Ascorbic acid (vitamin C) is an important antioxidant that helps improve vascular disorders by strengthening the collagen structures of the blood vessels to prevent hemorrhaging and easy bruising.15

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1Torkos, S. Vanish Varicose Veins with horse chestnut seed extract. Green Bay, WI: Impakt Communications, 1998.

2Murray ND, M. The Healing Power of Herbs. Rocklin, CA: Prima Publishing, 1995.

3Lenz, E. “Horse chestnut.” Herbs For Health; 1998, 3(4): 24.

4Fetrow PharmD, C. & Avila Pharm D, J. Professional’s Handbook of Complementary & Alternative Medicines. Springhouse, PA: Springhouse Corp., 1999.

5Newall, C., et. al. Herbal Medicines. London, England: Pharmaceutical Press, 1996.

6Diehm, C., et. al. “Medical edema protection—clinical benefit in patients with chronic deep vein incompetence. A placebo-controlled, double-blind study.” Vasa; 1992, 21(2): 188-192.

7—. “Comparison of leg compression stocking and oral horse-chestnut seed extract therapy in patients with chronic venous insufficiency.” Lancet; 1996, 347(8997): 292-294.

8Bisler, H., et. al. “Effects of horse-chestnut seed extract on transcapillary filtration in chronic venous insufficiency.” Dtsch Med Wochenschr; 1986, 111(35): 1321-1329.

9Pittler, MH and Ernst, E. “Horse-chestnut seed extract for chronic venous insufficiency. A criteria-based systematic review.” Archives of Dermatology; 1998, 134(11): 1356-1360.

10Miller, L. & Murray, W. Herbal Medicinals. Binghampton, NY: Pharmaceutical Products Press, 1998.

11Roundtree MD, R. “The Herb-Drug Mix.” Herbs For Health; 1999, 4(3): 52-54.

12Rudofsky, G. “Improving venous tone and capillary sealing.” Fortschr Med; 1989, 107(19): 52, 55-58.

13Passwater, R., et. al. Pycnogenol: The Super “Protector” Nutrient. New Canaan, CT: Keats, 1994.

14Mindell PhD, E. Earl Mindell’s Supplement Bible. NY, NY: Fireside Books, 1998.
15Murray ND, M. Encyclopedia of Nutritional Supplements. Rocklin, CA: Prima Publishing, 1996.