One good thing about winter; it’s easier to stay covered up without drawing unwanted attention to yourself. If you suffer from varicose veins, you fully understand the delicate dance of keeping your unsightly veins covered up and out of view. Hello, long pants at any time of year.
But if you are one of the 50 percent of American women who suffer from varicose veins, you’re in good company. According to the American College of Phlebology, up to half of American women have varicose veins or a related venous disorder. That’s a lot of women suffering in silence.
Varicose Veins vs. Spider Veins: What’s the Difference?
Varicose veins are not the same as spider veins, which are small broken capillaries close to the surface of the skin. They are mostly cosmetic in nature and rarely cause pain. Conversely, varicose veins can cause leg swelling, leg pain and are larger (usually more than a quarter inch in diameter) and often distended, located deeper than spider veins and can be related to more serious vein disorders.
Varicose Vein symptoms include:
- Swelling in the lower legs or ankles
- Heavy or tired feeling in the legs
- Leg cramping, pain, achy or itchy sensation
- Changes in skin color and texture
- Sores, ulcers or open wounds developing
Varicose veins are definitely more than a cosmetic concern and should not be covered up and ignored. Left untreated, they can pose significant risks to your health, including:
Superficial phlebitis (ST) – inflammation of a vein just below the surface of the skin, caused by decreased blood flow through the vein, damage to the vein or blood clotting. Symptoms include redness and a firm, tender, warm vein. Pain and swelling also may occur. ST increases your risk of developing deep vein thrombosis, a potentially serious condition that involves a blood clot in a deep vein.
Spontaneous bleeding – occurs as the skin on top of the varicose veins becomes thin. The vein may be easily injured, even by clothing, bedding or a slight bump.
Venous leg ulcers – results when the enlarged vein does not provide adequate drainage of fluid from the skin; the swollen skin receives insufficient oxygen and an ulcer can form.
Putting off treatment for your varicose veins is never a good idea and, in some cases, can lead to one or more of the problems listed above.
Advanced Varicose Vein Treatment at Lam Vascular & Associates
The doctors at Lam Vascular & Associates Dr. Russell Lam, Dr. Cassidy Duran and Dr. Esther Mihindu treat varicose veins in a variety of ways depending on how severe they are and the overall health of the patient. Advances in technology have allowed for minimally invasive treatments that have great success. Options include:
- Venefit Targeted Endovenous Therapy
- High Ligation
- Vein Stripping
Learn more about Lam Vascular’s advanced varicose vein treatment.
If you think you might be suffering from varicose veins, see Lam Vascular & Associates for an examination and find out if one of the above treatments is right for you. Treatment can often be performed in-office on an outpatient basis with minimal downtime. Schedule a consultation now.
The information contained in this article is not intended to be used as a substitute for medical advice. Patient results will vary based on risk factors, age, disease and medical history and are not guaranteed in any way.