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Varicose Veins

An Overview

Varicose Veins

Varicose veins tend to be dark purple or blue in color, raised from the skin, and twisted in their appearance. They most commonly appear on the calves and the inside of the legs. Varicose veins are much like spider veins, but larger, unsightlier, and much harder to remove.

What are Varicose Veins?

Varicose veins develop in the legs because of the pressure put on these limbs. Since we stand upright, gravity forces a lot of pressure on the lower part of the body, and the veins there have to work harder to send blood back to the heart. This can break the valves and allow blood to pool, causing the unsightly appearance of varicose veins.

Over time, varicose veins can become enlarged and quite painful, even causing swelling in the feet and legs. While some people have them removed purely for cosmetic reasons, others seek relief of such symptoms. Varicose veins are no longer functional, so no damage is done to the circulatory system by removing them.

What Causes Varicose Veins?

Women are more likely to experience this condition than men. The potential for varicose vein development is also heightened during pregnancy, for obese people, and for those who spend long days on their feet. However, the cause of varicose veins in most people is hereditary. This can make varicose vein removal more difficult than simply losing weight. These large, unsightly veins can also be connected to more serious blood clotting issues such as deep-vein thrombosis.

There are several options for removing varicose veins. Smaller ones can usually be effectively treated with sclerotherapy injections. For more severe or developed cases, laser vein treatment might be used, or surgical methods. Endovenous Laser Treatment, or ELT, is currently the most advanced and effective form of laser vein removal for varicose leg veins.

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