What Causes Varicose Veins on The Legs?
Varicose veins are a symptom of a common condition known as vein disease. In the US, there are about 25 million people living with varicose veins, according to the American Society for Vascular Surgery. Many people can live with vein disease for years without experiencing symptoms. However, when symptoms do develop, usually the varicose veins are the most obvious.
If you are wondering what causes varicose veins on the legs, it’s important to first be aware of how vein disease develops. Although this condition is common, it does have the potential to become more severe if left untreated.
Cause of Vein Disease
There are a variety of different factors that can lead to the development of vein disease or varicose veins. “The most common cause of vein disease is chronic inactivity,” shares Dr. Yan Katsnelson.
Vein disease occurs when the valves in veins malfunction and cause the blood to pool within the vein. If you are spending a lot of time sitting down or standing, this can lead to increased pressure on your leg veins, which over time can contribute to the development of vein disease.
There are other lifestyle factors that can also increase your risk for varicose veins in the legs, these include:
- People over the age of 50 – Age puts more strain on your veins causing them to weaken over time.
- Women – Hormone changes make women more at risk than men for vein disease in the legs.
- Pregnancy – Increased blood volume during pregnancy can enlarge your veins.
- Obesity – Extra weight can put more pressure on your veins.
- Family history of blood clots or vein disease – Genetics plays a key role in the development of vein disease.
- High blood pressure – This condition can increase your risk of vein valves malfunctioning.
What Are Varicose Veins?
Varicose veins are a result of Chronic Venous Insufficiency (CVI). They usually appear as raised, swollen veins that are often painful and discolored. Many people assume that varicose veins can only affect older people, however, anyone is susceptible to getting them, especially those that live an inactive lifestyle.
Why Do Varicose Veins Appear in the Legs?
Varicose veins can appear anywhere on the body, but most people find them on their legs, ankles, or feet. This is because the veins in our legs are under pressure when we are sitting or standing. “Over time, this pressure on the veins can cause the valves to malfunction, which leads to the collection of blood and the development of swollen, varicose veins,” states Yan Katsnelson, M.D.
If you are struggling with leg pain or leg cramping and want to know if it could be due to varicose veins in the legs, it’s important to observe the appearance of your legs every day. If you start seeing signs of vein disease like discoloration, swelling, itching or burning, you should meet with a specialist as soon as possible. Although varicose veins are not life-threatening, they can cause dangerous complications if treatment is delayed.
Find Relief Through Non-Surgical Treatment
If you want relief from the painful and annoying symptoms of varicose veins, we may have a solution for you. At USA Vein Clinics, we offer non-surgical treatments that are done in our outpatient clinics. Our treatments are eligible for insurance coverage and can be done is as little as 15-30 minutes, depending on the number of veins affected. We don’t want you to think you have to suffer with varicose veins in the legs forever, give us a call to see how we can help you through the use of our minimally-invasive treatments.
Dr. Yan Katsnelson is a philanthropist, business owner, and highly skilled cardiac surgeon. He is the Founder and CEO of USA Vein Clinics, which is part of USA Clinics Group, the parent company of USA Fibroid Centers, USA Vascular Centers, and USA Oncology Centers with more than 90 facilities nationwide. Dr. Yan has established himself as a strong advocate for accessibility and affordability of the most advanced medical care close to home, and his mission is to create a positive experience for each patient with compassionate, personalized, and expert care.