We often hear from patients asking how they can prevent varicose veins. While varicose veins can be treated, its difficult to prevent them. Once a person notices they are developing varicose veins, however, they can often prevent the symptoms from advancing. When their veins bother them enough, they are quite readily treatable with office based no down time procedures.
Risk Factors for Varicose Veins
If you have varicose veins, its probably not something you have directly caused yourself. For many patients is simply related to their genetics. With time, these genetic pre dispositions become more apparent.
- Gender: Almost 50% of women between ages 40 and 50 have some form of varicose veins. Varicose veins are 4 times more common in women than men. Men however, can develop varicose veins as well.
- Age: There is an increased risk of varicose veins with aging as wear and tear on the valves in the veins develops.
- Family history: You have a greater chance of developing varicose veins if there is a family history.
If you do have the propensity to develop varicose veins you can avoid certain features that make them worse. Patients with Obesity, for example, often report more varicose vein progression and worse symptoms. Likewise, those with lack of physical movement can report more advancement of varicose veins and their symptoms. It may not be that this was the cause, but these features can make them worse.
How to Prevent Varicose Vein Symptoms from Getting Worse
Although one cannot control their genetics, they can sometimes control features like having a healthy weight and keeping active. In particular, avoid standing or sitting for prolong periods without moving your legs. Some people find elevating their legs help vein symptoms. The use of compression hose can be useful to reduce symptoms of swelling.
How to Treat Varicose Veins Once they Become Bothersome
There are a number of new treatments available to treat varicose veins. For many years, varicose veins were treated by a surgery called vein stripping. This required patients to go to the hospital and be put to sleep. The recovery from this surgery was often very long, and patients were often not happy with their results. The surgery also caused a lot of pain and bruising as the patient recovered. Now there are no down time options such as thermal ablation, such as Closurefast, or Venaseal, both procedures that are performed in the office setting under a local anesthetic. Patients come in, have the procedure, and walk out. Many patients return to work the next day. Depending on the patients insurance and symptoms, these procedures are often covered by their insurance.
Myths about Causes and Prevention of Varicose Veins
There are a number of myths about causes and preventing varicose veins. Crossing ones legs, for example, does not cause varicose veins. Standing on a hard floor is not a known cause of varicose veins. While varicose veins can present quite dramatically during pregnancy, the pregnancy itself does not cause them. While there are genetic contributions, just because your parents have varicose veins does not mean you yourself will for sure develop varicose veins.
Want to Learn More about Varicose Veins?
If you are interested in learning more about varicose veins and treatment options, simply fill out our Online Appointment Request Form or call any of our clinics in Northwest Portland , Tigard, Happy Valley, Hillsboro or Bend, Oregon.