Frequently Asked Questions

When affected veins are sealed shut or removed from the leg, they cannot return. However, since there is no cure for weak valves, new varicose veins may develop in the same area. Ongoing treatment and monitoring can keep the condition under control, while prevention methods listed above may minimize the risk of additional varicose veins forming.

Not all varicose veins can be prevented entirely. However, there are ways to minimize the risk of developing this condition or reduce the severity of the varicose veins once they begin. Some of these prevention methods include elevating feet and legs, getting daily exercise and avoiding long periods of standing or sitting in a single position. Those who are at higher risk for developing varicose veins may also want to talk to their doctor about using compression stocking to prevent varicose veins from forming.

A vein specialist will typically begin varicose vein treatment with home remedies that are non-invasive and often effective on milder cases. Home treatments might include elevating legs whenever possible and the use of compression stockings to promote healthy blood flow. Maintaining a healthy weight and getting exercise daily can also help to minimize the effects of this condition. In some cases, home treatments might be combined with medical procedures to maximize a patient’s odds for success.

In some cases, varicose veins may not require treatment, particularly if they are not much of a cosmetic concern or accompanied by uncomfortable symptoms. However, there is a risk of untreated veins becoming worse over time. Whether you seek treatment or not, it is a good idea to have varicose veins evaluated by a specialist to determine whether treatment may be necessary to avoid exacerbating an underlying venous condition.

The average cost to treat smaller spider veins was $351 in 2012, according to the American Society for Plastic Surgeons. Cost for treatment of larger varicose veins may be much higher. The full cost of treatment depends on a number of factors, including the size and number of veins to be treated, the location of the doctor and the type of procedure used. Some physicians offer payment plans for patients that do not have insurance coverage, to make treatment more affordable.

If a patient is experiencing uncomfortable symptoms with the varicose veins, or if an underlying vein condition is diagnosed, insurance may cover at least a portion of the cost of varicose vein treatment. However, if the procedure is done for strictly cosmetic reasons, insurance coverage will probably not be included.

Treatment for varicose veins may vary based on the size of the affected veins and their locations. Treatment options include injections of a substance to seal the vein shut, or the use of laser light or other technology to heat and seal the vein. Larger veins can be treated through microphlebectomy and ambulatory phlebectomy, which use tiny incisions and a special tool to remove the affected veins from the legs. VeinRecovery offers additional information about treatment, to educate patients about their available options.

In most cases, varicose veins can be diagnosed through a simple physical examination. The doctor will probably want to know whether there are any symptoms accompanying the appearance of the veins, such as swelling or discomfort. In some cases, a non-invasive procedure known as Doppler ultrasound may be used to evaluate blood flow through the affected veins and search for possible blood clots.

Call your doctor about your varicose veins if they are a cosmetic concern you would like to eliminate. It is also a good idea to contact a physician if the varicose veins worsen, or if other symptoms develop. A visit to the doctor is the only way to ensure an underlying venous condition is not contributing to the appearance of varicose veins.

Varicose veins often pose little more than a cosmetic concern. However, the condition may be a sign of an underlying venous condition, such as deep vein thrombosis or venous insufficiency. This may be particularly true if the varicose veins are accompanied by any of the uncomfortable symptoms listed above.

Anyone can develop varicose and spider veins at any stage of adult life. Risk factors for the condition include gender (women are more likely than men to have varicose veins), heredity, age, weight gain and prolonged periods of sitting or standing.

The veins are responsible for carrying blood from various areas of the body to the heart. Tiny valves ensure all the blood inside the veins moves in the direction of the heart. When those valves become weak or damaged, they can malfunction, allowing blood to pool in a single area of the vein. That area can enlarge, leading to the appearance of varicose or spider veins on the surface of the skin.

In some cases, the only sign of varicose veins is the appearance of the veins on the surface of the skin. However, uncomfortable symptoms may also accompany varicose veins, including the feeling of achiness or heaviness in the lower legs, swelling, or burning or itching of the skin around the affected vein. In more severe cases, skin sores, known as venous ulcers, can develop around the ankle.

Spider veins are networks of red, blue or purple veins that can be seen on the skin’s surface. They occur when blood pools in the superficial veins, and often resemble a spider’s web. Spider veins are rarely serious, and usually pose no more than a cosmetic concern.

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Varicose veins are bulging, twisting veins that can be seen on the surface of the skin. They occur when the veins of the lower legs are no longer able to carry blood from the lower extremities to the heart as efficiently. Blood begins to pool in the affected vein, leading to the enlargement of the vein and the appearance of varicose veins.

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