Varicose Veins

    Varicose veins are gnarled, swollen veins that typically occur below the knees. For many people varicose veins don't cause discomfort and are simply a cosmetic concern, however, they may worsen over time, potentially leading to more sever issues such as ulcers or blood clots.

    Who is At Risk for Varicose Veins?

    While anyone may develop varicose veins in their life, there are several risk factors that increase the probability of developing it.

    • Age
    • Sex (women are more likely to develop varicose veins then men)
    • Obesity
    • Family history
    • Prolonged periods of sitting or standing 

    What are Symptoms of Varicose Veins?

    Symptoms of varicose veins can include:

    • Veins that are purple or blue in color
    • Veins that appear twisted and swollen
    • Aching, heaviness, or tiredness in the legs
    • Cramping, swelling, burning or throbbing in the legs
    • Itching or irritation in the legs
    • Venous stasis ulcers

    While varicose veins are typically not harmful, they can occasionally cause discomfort or lead to more serious complications. Please consult with a medical professional for more information.

    Can I Prevent Varicose Veins?

    There is no way to completely prevent varicose veins, but there are some guidelines that may help lower your risk:

    • Exercise
    • Avoid prolonged periods of standing or sitting (or change your position regularly)
    • Eat a high-fiber, low-sodium diet
    • Lose weight if you are overweight
    • Avoid wearing high heels
    • Elevate your legs

    Please consult with a medical professional before making changes to your diet or routine.

    Are Varicose Veins Treatable?

    Treatment for varicose veins include:

    • Compression stockings
    • Regular exercise
    • Avoid extended periods of standing or sitting
    • Elevate your legs while laying down or sitting
    • Lose weight if you are overweight
    • Additional treatments may be necessary for severe cases

    Please consult with your medical professional for more information and before beginning any treatment plan.

    Read more about Varicose Veins at Mayo Clinic