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You are here : 3-RX.com > Medical Encyclopedia > Diseases and Conditions > Varicose Veins: Treatment & Monitoring
      Category : Health Centers > Cardiovascular (Circulatory System)

Varicose Veins

Alternate Names : Venous Varicosities

Varicose Veins | Symptoms & Signs | Diagnosis & Tests | Prevention & Expectations | Treatment & Monitoring

What are the treatments for the condition?

Mild varicose veins need no treatment other than for cosmetic reasons. In most cases, people with symptoms can use support hose or heavier elastic knee-high stockings to manage their condition. Frequent rest periods with leg elevation can also help with leg swelling and the feeling of heaviness in the legs. Regular exercise is also advised to improve circulation to the legs.

If symptoms are severe or a person finds the appearance of the veins unacceptable, varicose vein surgery may be an option. A variety of surgery methods are used. These include cutting the veins out, injecting the veins with chemicals to destroy or shrink them, or using lasers or radio waves to destroy shrink the veins.

Treated varicose veins usually disappear with surgery. Problems do not return in the treated veins, but may develop in other veins. Once a varicose vein is closed or removed, nearby healthy veins take over the job of carrying blood back to the heart.

What are the side effects of the treatments?

All the surgical techniques cause some bruising and discoloration, which generally goes away over time. Skin scarring may also occur. As with any surgery, infection, bleeding, and reaction to any pain medicine used may occur.

What happens after treatment for the condition?

After the procedure, a person usually needs to wear a bandage or compression hose, or both. The vein that was treated scars over and causes no further problems. Later, though, people may get varicose veins that need treatment in other parts of the leg.

How is the condition monitored?

A healthcare provider should examine varicose veins periodically.

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Varicose Veins: Prevention & Expectations


Author: Terry Mason, MPH
Reviewer: Adam Brochert, MD
Date Reviewed: 04/09/01

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