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Dealing with Painful Varicose Veins

by Jane Meggitt

For most people, varicose veins are more unsightly than anything else. For some folks, varicose veins are more than ugly – they hurt. Fortunately, treatment is available. No one has to suffer from painful varicose veins.

Varicose Veins

Bulging, swollen varicose veins can develop anywhere, but are most common in the legs. The thighs and feet are other frequent sites. Varicose veins occur when the veins enlarge and fill with blood. They are often signs of poor circulation. Approximately half of all people over 50 develop varicose veins, and there’s also a genetic predisposition to their appearance. Varicose veins frequently appear in pregnant women.

Varicose Vein Pain

The most common type of varicose vein pain consists of cramping and aching legs. Legs may also swell, feel heavy and itch. Bleeding may occur. In a worst case scenario, the area ulcerates. If varicose veins bother you, see your doctor as soon as possible. There is always the possibility of blood clots forming in these overfilled veins.

Non-Invasive Treatment

Your doctor may initially recommend non-invasive treatment, and suggest lifestyle changes to ease varicose vein pain. That includes wearing compression stockings, to get the blood flowing toward your heart and less likely to pool in your veins. Avoid sitting or standing for long periods. Since obesity can cause varicose veins and subsequent pain, your doctor may provide you with a diet and exercise program. However, if you are in serious pain, you’ll require more intensive treatment.

Varicose Vein Removal

There are several methods to remove or shut down varicose veins. While insurance won’t cover vein removal for cosmetic purposes, that’s not the case if your veins cause you pain. In recent years, less invasive procedures have become available, making vein treatment an outpatient procedure with a relatively short recovery time. These treatments include:

  • Catheter procedures – a thin tube is inserted into the vein, and a burst of heat via radiofrequency seals off and closes the vein.
  • Laser therapy – smaller varicose veins often respond to non-invasive laser treatment.
  • Sclerotherapy – an injection into the varicose veins forces them to close and shrink within a few weeks.
  • Vein stripping – this surgical procedure removes the vein through a series of small incisions.

Depending on the procedure, the varicose veins may not shrink immediately, but any pain should subside fairly soon. All the technology available to eliminate varicose veins means you can get rid of them efficiently and stay pain-free.

If you or someone you know would like to learn more about vein treatment, please feel free to schedule a consultation or contact one of our representatives today!

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