Varicose veins are surface veins that have become enlarged, swollen, twisted, and/or bulging due to vein disease. They can be red, blue or flesh-toned in color and most often appear on the thighs, back of the calves, and the inside of the leg. They can also appear on the hands and some women may experience varicose veins in the vaginal and buttocks area.
To learn more about the varicose vein treatments that we offer, call today to schedule your consultation with our vein specialists in Houston and Austin.
What Causes Varicose Veins?
When a vein wall becomes weak or damaged, the one-way valves that control the flow of blood back up towards the heart are not able to open and shut properly. The breakdown of this critical function causes the blood to flow backwards, which leads to pooling of backed-up blood, which then causes the veins to stretch and enlarge – in other words, the vein becomes varicose. This valve breakdown is a medical condition called Venous Reflux or Chronic Venous Insufficiency.
What are Symptoms of Varicose Veins?
However big or small, the presence of varicose veins is felt as much as they are seen. The feelings most associated with varicose veins can be quite unpleasant. If you are experiencing any of the symptoms below, make an appointment to come in for a free screening and consultation with one of our vein experts to determine if you suffer from a form of Venous Reflux.
Common symptoms of vein disease include:
- “Jumpy” legs or restless legs (RLS)
What Factors can Contribute to Varicose Veins?
- Genetics are the primary reason people develop varicose veins
- Hormonal changes – female hormones released during ovulation and pregnancy and diminished during menopause cause vein walls to relax
- Age — The knees aren’t the only things “to go” as we get older. Vein wall elasticity goes too.
- Weight – Excess pounds puts excess pressure on veins
- Standing or sitting for long periods
What are my Varicose Vein Treatment Options?
Long gone are the days of “vein stripping” as the means to a cure for varicose veins. Major advances in image-guided, diagnostic ultrasound and minimally invasive ablation technologies has led to the development of procedures such as radiofrequency ablation (RFA / VNUS Closure) offered in our Hamilton Vein Center Houston and Austin vein clinics – where the vein is permanently closed using radiofrequency energy. Often times following RFA, patients may also require ambulatory phlebectomy or sclerotherapy.
What Do Varicose Veins Look Like?
Am I a Candidate for Varicose Vein Treatment?
A highly skilled ultrasound technologist will perform a detailed venous ultrasound in our office at your visit. This ultrasound determines if vein disease is present, and if so, the severity of the vein disease. From there, appropriate treatment options, including conservative and interventional measures will be discussed with you.
If you have varicose veins and are experiencing any pain in your legs or symptoms that might be associated with vein disease, call today to schedule your consultation with the vein specialists at Hamilton Vein Center in Houston or Austin. We are dedicated to our patients and the diagnosis and treatment of vein disease with vein centers located in Houston including Sugar Land, Bellaire, Kingwood, Katy, Clear Lake, The Woodlands, Lake Jackson, and Willowbrook. In Austin, we are located in Round Rock and South Austin.
Rethink Varicose Veins National Awareness Campaign
Hamilton Vein Center physicians and staff are participating in the national campaign Rethink Varicose Veins sponsored by Covidien. Here is some additional information about this important campaign. You can also visit www.rethinkvaricoseveins.com for more information.
The Society for Vascular Surgery® (SVS), American Venous Forum (AVF) and American College of Phlebology (ACP) launched theRethink Varicose Veins at the 38th annual VEITHsymposium™. Sponsored by Covidien, a leading global healthcare products company, the campaign seeks to elevate public awareness of varicose veins as a health concern worthy of medical diagnosis and treatment.
It is believed that more than 30 million Americans suffer from vein (venous) disease, including varicose veins and chronic venous insufficiency (CVI), yet only 1.9 million seek treatment annually. If left untreated, varicose veins can lead to the more serious form of vein venous disease, CVI, with symptoms that progressively worsen over time. Designed to educate consumers and engage healthcare professionals, this campaign will provide materials and resources about varicose veins and CVI to encourage awareness and action.
Olympic Gold Medalist Summer Sanders will be sharing her personal story about the impact venous disease had on her life and the improvement she experienced following treatment. Summer is a lifelong athlete and a busy working mother who suffered from heavy and achy legs before seek treatment. She will not only share her story but also encourage those with the condition to recognize that they have a health concern worthy of a medical dx and treatment. Summer will also be carrying the Olympic Torch during the opening ceremonies at the upcoming Summer Olympics in London.