Men and women suffer equally from varicose veins, but women seek treatment more frequently. The varicose veins can occur at any age but are more prevalent with increasing age.
Varicose veins appear when weakness of the vein wall and the valves cause superficial veins to stretch so their branches then become enlarged and twisted due to the backpressure and appear close to the skin as large bulging varicose veins.
The affected veins do not function properly and cause the blood to flow back into the leg causing symptoms such as pain, throbbing, aching, tiredness, heaviness, cramps, burning, itching, restless legs and swelling. They can also cause blood clots, thrombophlebitis, pigmentation, eczema and if left untreated, lead to more serious conditions such as bleeding veins and leg ulcers.
The damaged veins cannot be repaired and the best way to treat the problem is to remove or collapse the varicose veins and prevent the blood from flowing back into the leg. It is quite safe and is indeed beneficial to remove the varicose veins and to restore proper flow of blood through the other normal veins and the deep veins.
Unfortunately varicose veins are to a large extent dismissed as a cosmetic problem in so far to ignore early warning signs. No varicose vein is insignificant if it causes discomfort or distress. If you have developed new veins or if veins appeared after previous surgery and are symptomatic you should attend your doctor for advice and referral to a vascular specialist.