18 Aug 2016
August 18, 2016

Varicose Veins: Post Pregnancy

It is estimated that 10-25% of women develop varicose veins during pregnancy.

Varicose veins tend to become more pronounced after pregnancy, especially if you had varicose veins before pregnancy, have had multiple pregnancies, have a family history of varicose veins, tend to stand for long periods, or are overweight. You may also have developed spider veins during pregnancy. These tiny vessels near the surface of the skin most often appear on the ankles, legs, or face.

Many changes occur during pregnancy including increased pressure of the developing fetus on the pelvic veins. Your body increases blood volume during pregnancy, and decreases the speed that your blood returns from your legs to your pelvis. This increases the pressure on those veins. Additionally, high levels progesterone weaken vein walls, Estrogen causes veins to dilate. This results in stretching of the venous system, especially the valves, which can lead to venous reflux, which, in turn, can cause spider and possibly varicose veins.

Varicose veins may improve after childbirth, but they won’t go away completely. If your varicose veins don’t improve after you give birth and are making you uncomfortable, or even if you’re just unhappy with the way they look, you have various options for treating them.

A good time to discuss your unsightly veins with a specialist is when you’ve recovered from the vascular and hormonal changes of pregnancy.

At the ACP Vein Treatment Center, we offer minimally-invasive procedures as a first step to treating post pregnancy varicose, and spider veins. These procedure options are done on an outpatient basis in our state-of-the-art vein center.

Options for Treatment

Sclerotherapy is used commonly for spider veins and smaller varicose veins. It involves injecting a small volume of liquid into the diseased vein. The sclerosing liquid acts upon the lining of the vein to cause it to seal shut, eliminating the vein completely.

EVRF is based on thermocoagulation. Thermocoagulation is the heating of the vein wall through radio frequency waves which makes the vein coagulate. The treatment takes about 20 minutes, and is applicable throughout the whole year. There is virtually no pain, bruising, or scaring seen, and normal activities can be resumed within one day.

Endovenous Laser Treatment The endovenous laser treatment with the VariLase 810nm laser is used to correct venous reflux. Using ultrasound guidance, a catheter is inserted through a small incision into the saphenous vein. A laser fiber is then inserted into the catheter and used to deliver energy, while the fiber is being withdrawn from the leg, to close the diseased vein.

Compression therapy for venous edema Venous insufficiency, which can lead to the development of varicose veins, can also cause swelling, or edema.  Treatments can include exercise, wrapping, massage, compression stockings and a compression pump.