Do Massages Help Varicose Veins?

Font Size:
vein disease symptoms

Many of our patients ask, does massage help varicose veins? Massaging can help reduce stress, relax tight muscles, and lower blood pressure. It can even help improve circulation in the legs, lowering your risk for developing venous issues.

While massage may provide temporary relief from varicose vein symptoms, it is important to understand that massage will not make your varicose veins disappear. You may wish to consider minimally invasive vein treatment for a long-term solution.

Before booking a varicose veins massage, we recommend consulting a vein specialist. Massage can be dangerous for some individuals with poor vein health. Below, we discuss what you should know about varicose veins and massage, along with exploring non-surgical vein treatment options.


Varicose Veins and Massages

Vein disease, or venous insufficiency, is the underlying cause of varicose veins, spider veins, restless legs syndrome, and other venous conditions. Vein disease occurs when tiny, one-way vein valves are placed under strain and damaged. This can lead to blood pooling in the lower extremities, which may cause painful leg symptoms over time.

While massage may seem to alleviate these symptoms at first, this type of relief is only temporary. Massage does not address the root cause of your vein pain and discomfort—and for some individuals, massage is considered dangerous and should never be used. For instance, if a serious type of blood clot called deep vein thrombosis (DVT) is present, massage can lead to pulmonary embolism (PE), which is a life-threatening condition requiring emergency medical treatment.

It is critical to talk to a vein specialist before obtaining a varicose veins massage. During your consultation, your specialist may order a leg ultrasound to evaluate the state of your vein disease, check for DVT, and ensure that a massage is a safe option for you. They may also suggest lifestyle modifications and minimally invasive vein treatment to help relieve your vein symptoms.


Dangers of Massage Therapy for Varicose Veins

Can you massage varicose veins? Although you may be eager to schedule a leg massage for varicose veins symptoms, we recommend holding off until obtaining medical clearance.

Many of our patients are surprised to learn that varicose vein symptoms can be similar to those of deep vein thrombosis. DVT is a serious health condition that occurs when a blood clot develops within the deep venous system, or in veins located away from the surface of the skin. Most often, only one side of the body is affected, such as a single leg.

Common DVT symptoms include:

  • Pain or discomfort
  • Swelling
  • Tenderness
  • Warmth
  • Redness or skin discoloration

You may only experience mild DVT symptoms, or no symptoms at all. Without a leg ultrasound, symptoms of DVT can be confused with symptoms of vein disease. Therefore, it is important to rule out DVT when considering varicose veins and massage.

Common vein disease symptoms include:

  • Swelling in your legs, ankles, and feet
  • Cramps or achiness in the thigh or calf
  • Tired or heavy legs
  • Leg restlessness, especially at night
  • Itchy, dry, or hardened skin on your legs
  • Open, non-healing wounds on your legs and ankles
  • Leg pain that is relieved by walking or leg elevation

Individuals with deep vein thrombosis should never use massage to alleviate their symptoms. Massage can cause a blood clot to break off, travel through the bloodstream to the lungs, and lead to a pulmonary embolism.

Signs of a pulmonary embolism include:

  • Rapid heart rate
  • Difficulty breathing
  • Coughing up blood
  • Feeling lightheaded or faint
  • Chest pain or discomfort that worsens with a deep breath or cough

If you suspect that you may have DVT, please seek urgent medical evaluation. If you have signs of a pulmonary embolism, call 911 immediately or head directly to the nearest emergency room.


Vascular Massage Risks

As mentioned previously, you should not get a massage if you have deep vein thrombosis. To determine whether your venous symptoms are caused by DVT or progressing vein disease, consult a vein specialist.

Even if DVT is ruled out, your specialist can assess your risk for developing future blood clots. Certain lifestyle modifications, along with varicose vein treatment, may be beneficial.

Common risk factors for DVT include:

  • Age
  • Smoking
  • Obesity
  • Prior DVT
  • Cancer
  • Pregnancy
  • Genetics
  • Prolonged periods of standing or sitting
  • Other serious health conditions, such as diabetes or high blood pressure
  • Injury
  • Birth control pills or hormone replacement therapy
  • Vein disease

So, is it good to massage varicose veins? Since varicose veins massage recommendations can vary between patients, your specialist is the best person to answer the question for your unique situation.

Contact USA Vein Clinics for Effective Varicose Vein Treatment

Is massage good for varicose veins? Although massage may provide temporary relief from varicose vein symptoms, it is not an effective treatment for varicose veins. Additionally, massage can be dangerous for individuals with deep vein thrombosis.

Instead of varicose veins massage, our experts provide a range of long-term, minimally invasive, and office-based treatments for varicose veins, spider veins, restless legs syndrome, and other varicosities that can also be treated.

We believe that vein treatment should be both convenient and affordable. This is why we offer over 100 clinics nationwide. Most of our treatments last under an hour, from start to finish. Afterward, our patients usually leave immediately and resume most of their everyday activities.

We understand that you may be concerned about the cost of vein treatment. The good news is that treatment is typically covered by most major insurance plans, including Medicare and Medicaid. To discuss your plan’s details, just give us a call at 888.768.3467.

To learn more about minimally invasive, office-based vein treatment, schedule an appointment online today.


Schedule Online
Find a Location