Itchy Varicose Veins: Why Do They Itch & How to Treat Them

Font Size:
why do varicose veins itch blog article cracked dry skin due to vein disease. Why are my varicose veins so itchy?

Why Do Varicose Veins Itch? 

We hear this question a lot. Unfortunately, itchiness is a common symptom of varicose veins. If you’ve been diagnosed with vein disease, you may constantly be scratching at your legs, ankles, and feet. This can be a frustrating experience –– not to mention uncomfortable and sometimes even painful. 

Some affected individuals mistake this itchiness as a skin-based issue. They attempt to treat varicose vein itching with lotions and moisturizers instead of addressing the problem at its source. To make things potentially worse, if left untreated, itchy varicose veins can eventually develop into more dangerous venous ulcers

If you’re wondering how to stop varicose veins itching, we can help. Our vein specialists offer minimally invasive vein treatment that can quickly stop your itching and relieve other related symptoms. Here’s what you should know about vein disease, itchy varicose veins, and your treatment options. 

What is Vein Disease?

Vein disease, also known as venous insufficiency, is a common ailment that affects millions of people in the United States. Basically, malfunctioning veins cause blood to pool in your legs, ankles, and feet. 

You may experience a variety of painful and uncomfortable symptoms, including:

  • Swelling in your legs and ankles
  • Cramps or achiness in the thigh or calf
  • Tired or heavy legs
  • Restlessness, especially at night
  • Itchy, dry, or hardened skin on your legs
  • Wounds on your legs or ankles that take a long time to heal or don’t heal at all
  • Leg pain that goes away when you walk or elevate your legs

Your veins need to work properly to deliver blood to your heart and the entire cardiovascular system. To understand more on this process, here’s a brief primer: 

  • Your veins take oxygen-depleted blood back to your heart 
  • Your vein valves typically prevent the blood from flowing backward 
  • When these valves malfunction, your veins may struggle to send deoxygenated blood back to your heart
  • Valves that don’t work properly will let the blood flow backward
  • When this occurs, your blood can start to pool and venous insufficiency develops

Vein Disease, Blood Pressure, and Peripheral Edema

When blood begins to collect in the lower legs, your blood pressure can rise. When this happens, your capillaries may become damaged and leak proteins inside your tissues. This leakage sometimes causes a buildup of blood cells, proteins, and fluids. The buildup can result in excessive swelling in the legs, also known as peripheral edema. 

If you suffer from vein disease, you may notice swollen feet and legs along with itchy, red-toned skin. Over time, the affected areas may crack or break open. In severe cases, your skin can eventually develop venous ulcers –– or non-healing, open wounds. We recommend seeking treatment for your vein disease before this potentially dangerous condition can develop.

Why Do Varicose Veins Itch?

Vein disease can cause stasis dermatitis –– a type of skin inflammation. This commonly develops in the lower legs where blood collects. Along with itchiness, stasis dermatitis often involves other issues like hyper-pigmentation, scaling, and ulceration. 

Common signs of stasis dermatitis include:

  • Aching or heaviness in your legs when you walk or stand for a longer period
  • Swelling in your ankles by the end of the day
  • Visible, raised veins in your legs
  • Dry, itchy skin in the affected area
  • Irritated, swollen, red, and sore skin

As stasis dermatitis progresses, you may experience:

  • Dry, itchy, cracked skin
  • Swelling spreads to the calf
  • Ulcers or sores leak fluid when they’re healing
  • Open sores with a violet or red color on your lower legs or ankles

In severe cases of stasis dermatitis, you may notice:

  • The skin of your lower leg may become extremely itchy and hard
  • If left untreated, the affected area may become highly prone to infections
  • Shrinking in your calves 

Stasis dermatitis symptoms often worsen over time. At USA Vein Clinics, we recommend treating vein disease issues at their source –– your malfunctioning veins. Fortunately, our experts offer effective, office-based treatments that can ease your varicose vein itching.

How to Treat Itchy Varicose Veins

Our vein specialists at USA Vein Clinics offer several treatment options for varicose veins. These ultrasound-guided methods use lasers, foam, chemicals, or a combination to close off any malfunctioning vein valves. This results in the diversion of blood flow into your surrounding, healthy veins.

Our treatments for itchy varicose veins include:

During your initial visit, one of our specialists will first review your symptoms and medical history, then perform an ultrasound. This process will help determine which type of vein treatment is right for your unique situation. All of our specialized procedures are office-based and FDA approved. Best of all, most can take only 15 to 30 minutes, after which you can immediately return to normal activity. 

USA Vein Clinics Knows How to Stop Varicose Veins Itching

As the top-rated vein treatment center in the country, USA Vein Clinics offer 90 state-of-the-art locations in 14 states. Established in 2005, our highly regarded vein specialists have helped over 100,000 individuals resolve their venous insufficiency. 

If you are suffering from vein disease, please take the first step towards recovery by scheduling an initial consultation. When you come in, be assured that we are following strict precautionary measures to help avoid the spread of COVID-19. 

To schedule a consultation, you may choose one of these options:

Along with treating varicose veins and venous ulcers, we also treat spider veins, restless legs, and reticular veins. No matter what your issue may be, we look forward to helping you take back control of your life!

Schedule Your Appointment

Schedule Online
Find a Location