Capitol Vein Blog

Sunday, April 28, 2013

Is it Possible to Prevent Varicose Veins?

In my last blog, I cited Dr. Andrew Weil's blog post about heredity being the prime risk factor for varicose vein development.  His next post covered ways to prevent varicose veins: getting regular exercise, avoiding crossing your legs, and wearing compression hose. Since the risk of developing varicose veins is largely genetic, there are only a few steps that will really impact your chances of getting them.

Regular exercise is always a great idea, though I have seen many avid runners, cyclers and swimmers with significant varicosities. I have also seen many sedentary people with similar conditions. Receptionists, software engineers, truck drivers and other similar professionals also develop varicose veins.

"Avoid crossing your legs" is really an old wives tale, as there is little venous compression caused by this activity. The veins that cause varicose veins and that are treated with the VNUS Closure procedure (Venefit Procedure) are on the inner thigh, not in a position to be compressed by leg crossing.

Finally, using support hose does not reduce the risk of developing varicose veins; however, they can effectively reduce the symptoms of venous insufficiency, such as aching and swelling, and drive the blood up the leg toward the heart.

Ultimately, when you see varicose veins in the legs, seek evaluation from an experienced vascular surgeon, preferably one who is certified by the American Board of Phlebology.  Drs. Garth Rosenberg and Paul McNeill are both certified and members of the American College of Phlebology. Dr. Rosenberg is also a member of the American Venous Forum.


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