It can be a common misconception that varicose veins affect only older women, mainly grandmothers; but it’s important to note that varicose veins are not just for your grandmother. The truth is that varicose veins can affect just about anyone from younger adolescents and people in their thirties, to men and women in their forties and fifties. Additionally, varicose veins don’t just effect women, but men can develop them too. Of the total population, those affected by varicose veins are 25% women and 20% men.
It’s common to see elderly men and women with varicose veins because their skin and underlying tissues aren’t as strong as those of us who are younger. Still, men and women alike can develop varicose veins at any age. So now that we’ve taken care of that misleading belief let’s talk about the many ways you could be prone to acquiring varicose veins without even realizing it.
Causes and Symptoms of Varicose Veins
Varicose veins are often inherited from one or both parents, so if your mother, father or both of your parents had them, chances are that you will develop them as well. But genetics aren’t the only culprit when it comes to acquiring varicose veins, excessive weight gain or prolonged sitting or standing can cause insufficient blood flow. Varicose veins are a side effect of insufficient blood flow caused by weakened veins and their malfunctioning valves.
How do you know if you have varicose veins? There are a few early signs that you may be developing varicose veins, as some of these symptoms aren’t purely visible. The first sign that varicose veins are developing beneath the surface of the skin is a constant feeling of fatigue or pain in your legs. Constant itching in your ankles, burning sensations and restlessness in your legs and feet are a sign that could mean there is insufficient blood flow.
The visible signals are what we sometimes see on our grandmother’s legs—large, ropey, greenish-blue veins. Although these varicose veins may be unsightly, deep venous insufficiency below the surface is our main concern.
Symptoms of Varicose Veins:
- Aching, burning in the legs
- Swelling in legs and feet
- Night cramping
- Skin ulcerations
- Redness in the legs, mostly around the ankles
- Tightness in the calves
See the doctor; It’s easy.
It has nothing to do with toughness or masculinity; venous insufficiency can happen to anyone. Women are more likely to seek medical treatment, but that just means we can catch varicose vein development early. The sooner we can identify the early signs of varicose veins, the more effectively we can treat them. Preventative care is never too early to start if we don’t see varicose veins on the surface of skin just yet. Before recommending treatment, Dr. Matz at Canada Vein Clinics does extensive ultrasound imaging to explore the deep veins for further signs of venous insufficiency.
With Dr. Matz’s expert background in Phlebology, he can help you get started on reducing your chance of development, and recommend a series of treatments that are quick and painless. At Canada Vein Clinics, Dr. Matz takes care of patients of all shapes, sizes, and genders, treating a number of varicose and spider vein conditions alike.
Why it’s important to treat varicose veins.
Venous insufficiency can be an early indicator of cardiovascular disease, deep vein thrombosis or signs of embolism. It’s always important that we have good circulation throughout the body, especially the lower portion of the body. Since the lower half of the body has to move blood back up to the heart against gravity, these veins are significantly important, so we don’t have pooling of the blood here. Varicose veins can also make it difficult to walk and perform your daily functions with tired, tight legs.
If you’re experiencing any signs of varicose veins and are wondering how to remove them, Dr. Matz of Canada Vein Clinics offers a wide variety of minimally invasive vein closure treatments that can target the beginnings of varicose veins, down to the most advanced cases.
Our varicose vein treatments include:
- Sclerotherapy is a painless procedure that involves a small needle insertion into the surface varicose veins. A sclerosing solution is injected into the affected veins causing the vein walls to react and close in on themselves to block off the vein.
- VenaSeal is one of the latest varicose vein treatments that target the saphenous vein (larger surface vein of the legs on the inside of the thigh). VenaSeal uses a small needle and catheter combination to apply a superglue-like substance into the vein to block off flow completely. This procedure leaves the saphenous vein intact should you need it for any future cardiovascular procedures. No compression stockings are required.
- ClariVein is a single use catheter inserted through a small needlepoint into the affected vein. ClariVein applies a specific solution with a rotating wire tip in a 360-degree motion to close the vein completely as the catheter is pulled down the vein. This procedure is quick and effective.
- Mini-phlebectomy can remove the varicose veins from the leg completely. This procedure can be done in the clinic and simply requires two small hooked needles to remove portions of the affected vein. Mini-phlebectomy is an effective treatment for smaller varicose veins.
- Endovenous laser treatment (EVLT) is the varicose vein removal standard. Dr. Matz was one of the first to use this laser treatment to close off varicose veins through laser heat energy. Laser energy is applied to the vein walls and kills of the affected vein; the vein will scar and be reabsorbed into the body.
All of the treatment options above can be done during your lunch break and require next to no downtime. Dr. Matz will fit you with compression stocking should you need them and recommend avoiding intense exercise for just a few days following. If your grandmother can handle it with a smile on her face, you will love how quickly these vein treatments will get rid of your varicose veins. After our varicose vein treatments, you will feel healthier, and your legs will look amazing. In no time, you can get back to your golf and basketball shorts with a light heart, knowing you’ve taken care of your varicose veins. Remember varicose veins are not just for your grandmother.