What Causes Varicose Veins?

April 22, 2022

What Causes Varicose Veins?
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Varicose veins occur when the veins widen, dilate and fill with blood. In other words, varicose veins are abnormally enlarged veins that can occur in any part of the body. Varicose veins typically appear swollen and raised and have a bluish-purple or red colour.

The condition is prevalent, especially in women. This may be due to female hormones relaxing the walls of the veins, causing the valves to leak. In most cases, varicose veins appear on the lower legs.

Varicose veins are not considered a severe medical condition but can cause discomfort and pain. Additionally, they can cause emotional distress, as some people may feel unpleasant and embarrassed. However, varicose veins are common.

Causes of Varicose Veins

Varicose veins occur when the veins are not functioning correctly. Healthy veins carry blood to the heart. Varicose veins develop when the small valves in the veins stop working. This causes blood to flow backwards and collect in the vein. As a result, the blood pressure increases in the vein and causes it to become stretched, swollen, and enlarged.

Some causes for varicose veins include:

  • Pregnancy
  • Menopause
  • Age over 50
  • Standing for a long duration
  • Obesity
  • Family history of varicose veins
  • Smoking
  • Birth control pills
  • Being inactive

How does Gender Cause Varicose Veins?

Women are more likely to be affected by varicose veins than men. This may be due to female hormones relaxing the walls of the veins, causing the valves to leak. Hormones are chemicals produced by the body, and the changes can be caused by pregnancy, PMS or menopause.’

How does pregnancy cause Varicose Veins?

During pregnancy, blood increases to help support the baby inside the womb. Unfortunately, this strains your veins. Varicose veins may also develop as the womb grows. Also, when the uterus expands, it puts pressure on the veins in the pelvic region, which can sometimes cause varicose veins. Although being pregnant can increase your risk of developing varicose veins, most women discover their veins substantially enhanced after the child is born.

How does genetics cause Varicose Veins?

The risk of developing varicose veins increases if a close family member has them. This suggests the genes may partly cause varicose veins.

How does age cause Varicose Veins?

As we age, the veins begin to lose their elasticity, and the valves within them stop working.

How does being overweight is related to Varicose Veins?

Being overweight puts extra pressure on your veins, which means they have to work harder to send blood to your heart. This can increase the pressure on the valves, making them more prone to leaks. The impact of body weight on the development of varicose veins appears to be greater in women.

How does one’s occupation lead to varicose veins?

The impact of body weight on the development of varicose veins appears to be greater in women. This is because your blood does not flow easily when standing for long periods.

Symptoms of Varicose Veins

  • Large, bumpy veins that look like snakes
  • A feeling of tired legs
  • Painful veins
  • Itching in the leg and ankle
  • Itchiness after wearing socks
  • Redness or rash is often mistaken for dry skin
  • The feeling of tired legs
  • Painful veins
  • Burning and pulsating in the legs
  • Skin colour changes

Sometimes varicose veins may cause complications. These may include:

  • Red, scaly, itchy rash on the inside of the leg above the ankle
  • Clotting in a superficial vein
  • Damage to the veins of the legs leads to a blood circulation problem
  • Leg ulcer

Types of Varicose Veins

There are numerous types of varicose veins, such as:

  • Trunk varicose veinsare close to the floor of the pores and skin and are thick and knobbly; they are often lengthy and may appear unpleasant.
  • Reticular varicose veins: These are usually blue or purple in their appearance. It appears on the backs of your knees, on your inner thighs, or near your ankles.
  • Telangiectasia varicose veins


Treatment for Varicose Veins

If treatment is necessary, your doctor may first suggest the usage of compression stockings, taking normal exercise and elevating the affected area whilst resting. If your varicose veins are causing you aches or discomfort, or they cause complications, they may be dealt with in several ways.

The most common treatment options include:

  • Endothermal ablation: in which heat is used to seal affected veins.
  • Sclerotherapy:this uses special foam to close the veins.
  • Ligation and stripping:the affected veins are surgically removed.

Prevention of Varicose Veins

There is little evidence that preventing varicose veins from getting worse or preventing the development of new veins is possible.

But there are ways to relieve the symptoms of existing varicose veins, such as:

  • Averting, standing or sitting still for long intervals and trying to move around every 30 minutes.
  • Take regular breaks daily, elevating the legs on pillows whilst resting to ease discomfort.
  • Exercising regularly especially walking, is good for people with Varicose veins and can improve movement and help maintain a healthy weight.

People also ask

1. What Happens if Varicose Veins are Left Untreated?

Varicose veins can cause ulcers (open sores), bleeding, and skin discolouration if left untreated.. They can lead to serious health complications also. These complications can range from moderate to serious issues such as superficial venous thrombophlebitis, bleeding episodes and deep vein clots.

2.What is the Leading Cause of Varicose Veins?

Varicose veins are caused by increased blood pressure in the veins.. Other main causes of Varicose veins include being female, older, pregnancy, long periods of standing, obesity, genetics, smoking etc.

3.Can Varicose Veins go Away?

Varicose veins and spider veins do not go away on their own but can sometimes become less noticeable. You may also find that the symptoms go away temporarily, especially if you lose weight or increase your physical activity. However, your vein symptoms will likely return over time.

4. How do you Fix Varicose Veins?

More prominent varicose veins are usually treated with ligation and stripping, laser, or radiofrequency treatment. In some cases, a combination of treatments may work best. Smaller varicose veins and spider veins are usually treated with sclerotherapy or laser therapy on your skin.


Disclaimer: We recommend consulting a Doctor before taking any action based on the above shared information.



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