Like many men and women you may be living with varicose veins? You may be thinking, “not me”, however, especially with the older population in and around the Phoenix area, many people actually have the condition and are completely unaware.
While a common presentation for Varicose veins are the typical enlarged, blue, often twisted veins that are palpable (able to be felt through the skin), some men and women with the condition don’t experience these symptoms, rather they may be asymptomatic or have other complaints such as leg pain or a feeling of heaviness in the legs.
Varicose veins are most commonly found in and around the ankle area and the upper portion of the legs. Caused by the tiny valves in the veins of the leg, malfunctioning, (which allows blood to flow down the leg, and pool, as opposed to up towards the heart for re-oxygenation). It can cause a great deal of pain.
While they are often not a serious condition, at the time of an exam with a vein specialist, if a certain degree of what is called reflux is discovered by your doctor, one should be evaluated further to see if varicose vein removal surgery (often referred to vein ablation) is indicated, as in some cases varicose veins can be a sign of a more serious underling health conditions, such as CVI (chronic venous insufficiency).
Who is at risk?
While varicose veins impact both men and women, those who are overweight, or who stand for a great portion oft heir day, may be at an increased risk for developing venous stasis, which can lead to varicose veins.
What to be on the look out for:
A typical presentation for varicose veins can be ropy dark, purplish/blue veins that may or may not be palpable under the skin. It is not uncommon for those with veins disease to not exhibit any symptoms at all. But if you experience:
Burning sensations at rest or when walking, dull aching feeling in the legs, a feeling of heaviness or excessive tiredness of the legs and cant sit or stand for a long period of time—you may want to have an ultrasound to see if you have developed venous reflux or varicose veins.
Today, laser procedures replace the more invasive and painful procedures of the past (vein stripping). Unlike its predecessors EVLT (a form of laser vein removal) is a simple in office procedure that can be preformed with little to no pain or recovery time. In many cases health insurance covers what are deemed to be medically necessary vein treatments, often with little out of pocket expense. It is important to differentiate cosmetic vein treatments and medically necessary treatments. Speak to your doctor to get the facts, especially if you are living with unexplained leg pain, or are experiencing any of the symptoms mentioned above.