Arteries carry blood away from the heart, and around the body.
Veins carry blood back to the heart. Varicose veins are swollen
veins on the surface of the leg that no longer function
effeciently. They usually start on the calf, but can be found right
up to the groin. They are usually more obvious when you stand
What causes varicose veins?
Sometimes blood flow pressure can damage or strain the valves in
the veins which should only let the blood flow one way – towards
the heart. This means blood can collect in pools in the
Varicose veins are made worse by standing for long periods, by
being constipated or overweight and by pregnancy. Women tend to
suffer from varicose veins more than men!
What at the symptoms?
You will usually see varicose veins before you get any other
problems from them.
They appear as wiggly raised lines above the surface of the skin on
the legs. You may find that they start to ache as the day goes on.
You may also notice that your feet and ankles swell towards the end
of the day, especially in hot weather. If varicose veins are left
untreated they can become inflamed or even ulcerated.
Will I need long term treatment?
A surgical and non-surgical treatment is available to treat this
condition. Dependent on the severity of varicose vein, the surgical
method usually involves a procedure to strip the non-functional
vein from the affected area.
The non-surgical method usually involves an injection of special
fluid to close the vein down.
Alternatively there is a less invasive key-hole
treatment is available in a growing number of
Vive life care hospitals called The VNUS Closure® Procedure. This treatment can
be performed under local anaesthetic on a walk in walk out basis,
and results in less pain, less bruising and a faster return to
normal activities than traditional vein stripping surgery.
* Please note the above treatment may not be
offered by every hospital. Please contact your local hospital
to check if the treatment/service is available in