Varicose veins are veins that have become painfully enlarged. Varicose veins occur most often in the legs, although they do have the potential to occur elsewhere.
When the valves in leg veins or elsewhere no longer meet properly, the valves begin to stop working. With this dysfunction in meeting points, the blood within the veins begins to flow backwards, causing enlargement. At this point those veins become varicose.
The most common type of varicose vein is the superficial leg vein which is the product of prolonged standing. Besides the appearance of these veins, they are also very painful when making leg movements, like walking, running, or even standing.
Vein stripping or vein removal are the most common methods to remove the bothersome areas. The Iowa Clinic Vein Therapy Center also offers other less invasive treatments such as laser vein therapy.
Signs and Symptoms of Varicose Veins
- Pain in the legs: fullness, heaviness, aching
- Visible, enlarged veins
- Mild swelling of the ankles
- Skin at the ankle is discolored brown
- Skin ulcers near the ankle