When people think of varicose veins, they tend to think of them as a cosmetic issue seemingly reserved exclusively for older women. But the truth is that a surprising amount of men suffer from varicose veins, spider veins and other vein disorders, as well! Although a larger percentage of women suffering with varicose veins will seek medical treatment for them, men who suffer with varicose veins will experience the same symptoms, such as leg pain, swelling, heaviness fatigue, and bulging veins, and are at the same risk for developing advanced complications such as chronic venous insufficiency, stasis dermatitis and venous ulcers if left untreated.
Why Do We Think of Varicose Veins as a Women’s Medical Issue?
Due to pregnancy, hormones and genetic predispositions, women are indeed more likely to develop varicose veins than men. However, researchers estimate that up to 45 percent of men develop varicose veins at some point between the ages of 40-80. The exact percentage is difficult to calculate since many men do not seek treatment. We tend to think of varicose veins as a female issue due to the simple fact that women are more likely to seek treatment for them. Many women have witnessed the unsightly and painful symptoms that their mothers/grandmothers experienced while living with their own untreated varicose veins for years and are determined to not make the same mistake. It’s also probable that the cosmetic appearance of vein disease, such as unsightly bulging veins, leads more women to seek treatment due to the differences in clothing between men and women. Most of our male patients tend not to seek treatment until the varicose veins progress and become highly symptomatic, and they are subsequently pleasantly surprised with how less achy, heavy and tired their legs feel almost immediately after treatment. They often comment that they wish they had treated them sooner.
Varicose Vein Treatment For Men
What are Varicose Veins?
Varicose Veins are superficial veins that have lost their ability to appropriately carry blood out of the leg and back up to the heart, thus allowing the blood to flow backward toward the feet. Also known as venous insufficiency or venous reflux, varicose veins are a result of non-functioning valves inside the veins. Once a vein has become varicose, it will not go back to normal and should be treated, whether or not it is causing symptoms. Genetics, lifestyle, and age often influence a male’s likelihood to develop varicose veins.
Although Varicose veins are not a life-threatening problem, they are likely to progress if left untreated, ultimately causing symptoms of pain, fatigue, heaviness, cramping, and swelling of the legs and ankles. More importantly, patients with untreated varicose veins are also at risk for developing more advanced, problematic complications including eczema-type symptoms, skin thickening, and discoloration, bleeding, infections, and even blood clots and ulcerations (open sores) that won’t heal until the veins are treated.
Treatment for Varicose Veins
Conservative vein treatment, which is a combination of wearing medical grade compression stockings, leg elevation, and daily exercises, may provide some temporary symptomatic relief, but the underlying source of the diseased veins typically requires Endovenous Laser Ablation (EVLA) for a complete medical recovery, along with either Ultrasound-Guided Sclerotherapy or Ambulatory Phlebectomy, a micro-extraction procedure used to remove bulging varicose veins, both large and small, that are close to the surface through very small incisions.
Fortunately, varicose vein treatments at Premier Vein & Body by Schwartz are:
- Minimally invasive
- Performed in-office
- Typically covered by most insurance companies
- Have minimal downtime or discomfort
- Require no general or regional anesthetic
Schedule a Complimentary Vein Screening* with Dr. Craig Schwartz, Kansas City’s “Original Vein Doctor” to learn more about your treatment options for varicose veins or spider veins by calling (913) 451-VEIN (8346). Dr. Schwartz is a triple-board certified vascular surgeon and has performed over 12,000 vein procedures.
Premier Vein & Body by Schwartz is located in Leawood, KS and proudly also serves Overland Park, Johnson County and the entire Kansas City metro area.
* Initial complimentary vein screening will include a visual evaluation and subsequent discussion with Dr. Schwartz. However, if patient presents with symptoms of varicose vein disease (not just spider veins), a diagnostic test, such as a venous ultrasound/duplex examination, that is considered medically necessary per the physician’s determination, will be billed as a separate charge, and $450 will be billed to your insurance provider. Pending your carrier’s response, you may be ultimately responsible for some portion or ALL of this charge, which may include deductibles, co-insurance and/or co-pays. If your insurance company denies this charge, your patient responsibility portion may be partially discounted if you proceed with vein disease treatment through our office.
** This blog provides general information and discussion about medicine, health and related subjects. The words and other content provided in this blog, and in any linked materials, are not intended and should not be construed as medical advice. If the reader or any other person has a medical concern, he or she should consult with an appropriately-licensed physician.