Despite the fact that half of all Americans suffer from some form of venous insufficiency, there are still a lot of misconceptions about vein health.
In fact, many myths surround varicose veins, which are dilated vessels that often occur on the legs and lower extremities.
So, how can we separate fact from fiction? Keep reading to learn eight common myths about varicose veins.
Many people assume that all varicose veins can be categorized as a cosmetic concern.
However, what you they may not know is that varicose veins can present with a number of associated symptoms, including leg aching, heaviness, throbbing, swelling, itchiness, and dryness.
Although varicose veins can get worse or become more pronounced as we get older, individuals of any age can get varicose veins. Especially, if they are susceptible to other risk factors like hereditary, pregnancy, or obesity.
While 20-25 percent of women have visible varicose veins, 10-15 percent experience them as well. Despite this marginal difference between the sexes, men are less likely to seek treatment for them.
However, those that do undergo sclerotherapy or other vein procedures note relief in leg pain and discomfort and that the affected area looks better too.
Depending on a person’s anatomy and venous health, varicose veins may be superficial and visible or they can occur deeper.
That’s why it’s important for patients to be on the lookout for symptoms of varicose veins, such as heaviness, throbbing, and swelling, that may be less noticeable.
Varicose veins may be more apparent after long periods of standing because of gravitational forces. However, routinely activating the calf pump in the leg by walking, stretching, or rocking feet from toe to heel helps propel blood to heart and away from lower extremities.
Despite certain risk factors, individuals can improve or limit progression of varicose veins by maintaining a stable weight, following a low sodium diet, engaging in regular exercise, and stretching and strengthening the calf pump during periods of standing and sitting.
Thanks to technological advancements, the majority of varicose veins can be corrected with non-surgical procedures like sclerotherapy, endovenous ablation, and laser treatments.
Although current therapies can offer effective and long-lasting improvement of varicose veins, they are not meant to be curative. Therefore, patients may need additional treatments for recurring or new veins.
For additional information about varicose veins treatment in Baltimore, please contact the Vein Center of Maryland today to schedule a consultation. We are conveniently located in Westminster, Eldersburg, Baltimore, Hunt Valley and Bel Air.
We also service Ellicott City and Columbia in Howard County.