Varicose veins are swollen and gnarled veins that are highly visible underneath the skin. They can appear anywhere in the body, but they are most common in the legs and feet. Varicose veins affect roughly 25 percent of adults in the United States, although they are most common in women over the age of 50. Although varicose veins are often seen as a cosmetic issue, they can cause considerable leg vein pain and health issues for some people. Contact us today to schedule your consultation.
What Are the Symptoms of Varicose Veins?
Varicose veins often present themselves as dark purple, bulging veins that can be easily seen just underneath the skin’s surface. They may appear twisted and bulging, much like knotted cords running through your legs and feet. When you do experience leg vein pain, you might feel an uncomfortable aching or cramping in your legs and feet, especially after you’ve been sitting or standing still for a long period of time.
Varicose veins that cause color changes in the skin, hardened veins, ulcers or bleeding may be a sign of a more serious vascular disease that requires immediate medical attention.
What Are the Causes of Varicose Veins?
Your veins are blood vessels that bring blood back to the heart. They contain valves that make sure that your blood flows in the right direction. If they fail, blood can pool in your veins and cause them to become swollen. Since the veins in your legs and feet are the farthest from the heart and have to fight gravity, they are the most likely to swell and become varicose.
Although varicose veins can affect just about anybody, there are certain risk factors that increase your chances of developing them. These include:
A family history of varicose veins
Varicose veins are also most common in women over the age of 50, and they can be worsened by sitting or standing still for long periods of time.
Caring for and Treating Varicose Veins
In many cases, varicose veins can be treated or avoided through lifestyle changes. Regular exercise, maintaining a healthy weight, and avoiding sitting or standing for long periods of time are all helpful. Compression stockings can also improve varicose veins. These are special stockings that place pressure on the veins in your legs to improve circulation and reduce swelling.
Varicose veins can also be surgically removed, although this isn’t as common as it once was now that there are less invasive procedures available. Venefit™ endovenous therapy is one such treatment.
For more information about leg vein pain or to discuss treatment options for varicose veins, we can help you learn everything you need to know at The Vein Center in Mt. Pleasant, SC. Contact us today to schedule your first appointment.