28, 5, 2020

How to Manage Varicose Vein Pain at Home


While venous interventions are the best way to alleviate long-term pain related to varicose veins, symptoms can be managed conservatively at home. Especially under the stay-at-home safe harbor orders.  Conservative management can be helpful to relieve symptoms and also prevent complications (such as thrombophlebitis). These include:

  • Avoid standing or sitting for long periods of time:  To keep blood moving when you have to sit or stand for long periods, try these tips: at work, take walking breaks and try walking during your lunch hour. While sitting, try flexing your feet up and down 10 times an hour. When standing, raise yourself up and down on your toes or rock back and forth on your heels.

Varicose Vein Pain, Walking Breaks At Work

  • Exercise: Exercising is good for your veins because it improves blood flow. Walking, cycling or swimming are great exercises for vein health. But be sure to check with your doctor before starting any exercise program.

exercises for vein health

  • Weight loss or maintaining a healthy weight: Being overweight puts extra pressure on your veins.

Manage Varicose Vein Pain Method, Weight Loss or Maintaining A Healthy Weight

  • Leg elevation: Use leg elevation three or four times a day for about 15 minutes at a time. Even elevating your legs on a step stool or ottoman is beneficial. If you need to sit or stand for a long period of time, flexing (bending) your legs occasionally can help keep blood circulating. If you have mild to moderate varicose veins, elevating your legs can help reduce leg swelling and relieve other symptoms.

Manage Varicose Vein Pain Method, Leg Elevation

  • Compression stockings: These elastic stockings squeeze or compress the veins and prevent blood from flowing backward. Compression stockings must be graduated, medical-grade compression to be beneficial. TED hose are not adequate to reduce symptoms in venous disease for active patients. Although we typically recommend being fit for compression stockings, compression stockings can be purchased at home, from online resources. Email us if you would like suggestions.

Manage Varicose Vein Method Compression Stockings

  • Supplements such as horse chestnut and grape seed extract can help reduce symptoms of venous disease. Vascular is a prescription medication that may be helpful for some. Always check with your PCP before starting supplements or new medications as there may be side effects.
  • A flavinoid-rich diet including berries, green teas can reduce inflammation and pain.
  • Anti-inflammatory medications such as ibuprofen
  • ice packs are my favorite way of reducing painful veins. Put ice cubes in a ziplock bag and apply to tender veins.
  • Anti-inflammatory creams can be prescribed to apply directly to painful veins.
How to Manage Varicose Vein Pain at Home2021-11-03T16:37:58-07:00

20, 4, 2020

Health Risks of Working-From-Home


Prolonged desk work can increase the risk of blood clots in leg veins.

As many Americans are working from home, we have received many calls from patients regarding thrombophlebitis. This is not a new scenario for us, over the years frequently patients come in for assessment of leg pain after working on their computers for 12 hours straight.

ThromboPhlebitis refers to blood clots in the leg veins and inflammation of the surrounding vein. The inflammation causes leg pain and redness of the surrounding skin. You may also feel hard lumps in the leg veins.

Inactivity, sitting for long periods of time, like sitting at your desk, working on your computer for many hours without walking or getting up for a light walk or exercise, affects the blood flow in the leg veins. Your calf muscle pump, which is used when walking and moving about helps to move blood back to your heart. Sitting for too long of periods, increases the risk of your blood pooling in the leg veins and can even form blood clots. Blood clots that form in the deep veins are serious as they can travel to the heart and lungs (deep venous thrombosis). Blood clots that form in the surface veins, are called superficial thrombophlebitis (STP).  With STP, you can typically feel lumps that can be painful. People who have varicose veins, have an increased risk of developing STP especially with inactivity.

Tips to Avoid Phlebitis When Working From Home:

  1. Avoid sitting at your desk or computer for longer than 45 minutes without taking a break to get up and walk about.
  2. Try to walk at least 30 minutes a day or other exercise
  3. When sitting, do calf raises to pump the calf veins.
  4. If you have varicose veins, you should wear compression stockings during the day time.
Health Risks of Working-From-Home2020-08-19T00:48:02-07:00

Easter Dinner & Leg Pain: What’s the Correlation?


After a holiday, patients frequently complain about leg pain. Especially, holidays where hours of cooking are involved like Thanksgiving, Easter, Christmas, Passover, etc. Some people who may have mild venous reflux disease, may not notice any symptoms until they are standing for hours- like during cooking. Over the years, we always hear from patients that their legs were aching and fatigued after cooking. The reason for this is venous reflux disease causes backflow of blood. The blood pools in the legs and the pooling of blood causes sensations of heaviness, fatigue, aching, and even night cramps and restlessness. Ankle swelling may also be more prominent. Elevating the legs allows the blood to flow in the correct direction and reduces the pooling of blood and symptoms. Wearing compression stockings during cooking can be helpful to reduce symptoms. Also when standing upright for hours, it is helpful to do calf pump raises.

Diagram of healthy and diseased vein valves

Leaky vein valves allow blood to pool, causing leg pain, heaviness, and fatigue.

Easter Dinner & Leg Pain: What’s the Correlation?2021-11-04T19:53:27-07:00

Hidden Signs That Varicose Veins Are Developing


Varicose Veins Are Not Always Visible to the Naked Eye

An estimated 80 million Americans suffer from a vein-related condition. Since most veins lie deep under the skin’s surface, vein disorders are not always visible to the naked eye. As a result, it’s important to be aware of the symptoms that might reveal an underlying vein condition such as

A duplex ultrasound examination can be done to properly diagnose varicose veins and underlying vein conditions. An ultrasound uses sound waves to create pictures of the blood vessels inside your body. The ultrasound exam, which is painless and takes fewer than 30 minutes, allows a trained specialist to examine your venous system to determine if your symptoms are connected to a vein-related condition. The good news is that many vein conditions can be easily treated. Often, you just need to look beneath the surface to get moving in the right direction.

Hidden Signs That Varicose Veins Are Developing2021-10-29T19:03:03-07:00

16, 2, 2016

What are the Symptoms of Varicose Veins and Spider Veins?


Varicose veins and spider veins develop gradually and progressively. They are unsightly and are often a source of considerable discomfort. Both varicose veins and spider veins can cause symptoms. Symptoms often become worse during the menstrual cycle and pregnancy for women. The symptoms can include:

  • Aching, tenderness
  • Heaviness, fatigue
  • General restlessness in the legs
  • Burning pain
  • Throbbing pain
  • Itching
  • Leg cramps, particularly at night
  • Ankle swelling
  • Skin discoloration at the ankle
  • Skin ulcers above the ankle
What are the Symptoms of Varicose Veins and Spider Veins?2020-12-19T02:30:36-08:00

5, 8, 2012

Olympic Athlete Struggles With Varicose Veins

Olympic athlete Summer Sanders

Olympic athlete Summer Sanders

Patients sometimes tell us that they feel isolated or alone as a result of their varicose veins. The fact is, however, that they are not alone- one in four Americans have some form of vein disorder. Olympic athletes get varicose veins too! Olympic swimmer and gold-medalist, Summer Sanders shares her story of suffering with varicose veins. “As a life-long athlete and Olympic swimmer, I never thought a condition like varicose veins or chronic venous insufficiency (CVI) would affect me. It soon hit me that, even though I was active, I was starting to get my mother’s legs.
It’s important for people to realize that varicose veins and CVI can happen to anyone and they are more than just a cosmetic issue. But you don’t have to live with the uncomfortable and painful symptoms. There are minimally-invasive treatments available that are covered by many insurance plans.
It’s time to Rethink Varicose Veins. I’m glad that I did.” Watch Summer’s story at youtube https://youtu.be/my5b_R1JEFc

Olympic Athlete Struggles With Varicose Veins2021-11-03T22:28:14-07:00
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