What are varicose veins?
Varicose veins are enlarged veins which develop close to the skin’s surface. These veins resemble cords and often develop on the legs and feet.
What are the symptoms of varicose veins?
Symptoms of varicose veins include aching pains and discomfort which may be associated with a heavy feeling on the legs. This pain is often aggravated by standing for a long duration.
Other symptoms associated with varicose veins include muscle cramping and itching around the enlarged veins. In severe conditions, patients can also develop discoloration of the skin and sores around the ankles.
What are the causes of varicose veins?
Pregnancy is one condition that is associated with the development of varicose veins due to the increase in blood that occurs during this period. The reduction of blood flowing back to the pelvis combined with the hormonal changes that occur when a woman is pregnant also predispose her to developing enlarged leg veins.
Advancing age is another condition linked to the development of varicose veins because of the loss of elasticity in the veins and the weakening of their valves. This results in blood pooling in the veins instead of returning to the heart. This pooling of blood causes the veins to enlarge and become bluish in color.
Other factors that cause varicose veins include a sedentary lifestyle and jobs which involve prolonged sitting or standing. Obesity is also associated with the development of this condition since it puts extra pressure on the veins.
How does varicose vein treatment work?
Varicose veins are commonly addressed through an endovascular treatment with radiofrequency ablation. This is done by using a vascular ultrasound to find the greater saphenous vein, placing a catheter into the vein, and burning it. The procedure is not painful and can be done in the clinic, which means these veins can be treated quickly, and patients are able to enjoy a fast return to normal daily activities.
Dr. Pensler also uses microstab phlebectomy. This procedure entails a small incisions on the leg to pull ugly, large varicose veins out.