3 Symptoms You May Not Realize Are Being Caused by Varicose Veins

Varicose Veins

Nearly 35% of adults in the United States are affected by varicose veins, a condition that usually causes only a few symptoms. If you’re like most people with varicose veins, your biggest complaints might be for aesthetic reasons.

Varicose veins are enlarged, twisted veins that commonly occur in your legs as a result of weak or damaged valves in your veins. Valves that don’t function properly can’t work as well to help blood return to your heart, and blood pools in the vein. Dr. Fadi Bacha is a well-known vein expert who also specializes in medical aesthetics at the Anti-Aging Institute in Lexington, Kentucky. It’s Dr. Bacha’s goal to help you look and feel your best.

Beyond the obvious symptoms of visible, dark, gnarled veins in your legs or other places on your body, here are three other common symptoms that you may not even realize are being caused by varicose veins:

1. An achy, heavy feeling in your legs

Do your legs feel achy or heavy at the end of the day or after you’ve been on your feet for a long time? When it’s hot outside, does the achiness and heaviness get worse? These are common symptoms for people with varicose leg veins, even though you might not make the connection.

You may also experience pain in your legs when you walk a long distance because varicose veins often cause your muscles to tire easily.

2. Nighttime leg cramps

You might dismiss it as a sign of getting older or perhaps not enough potassium in your diet, but nighttime leg cramps are another symptom of varicose veins. Pain and leg cramps tend to worsen when you’re at rest.

3. Itchy ankles and legs

This common symptom of varicose veins is often misdiagnosed as dry skin. This itchiness is common in your calves and ankles, and while moisturizer may relieve the itch, it doesn’t address the underlying cause.

In addition to these three symptoms, you may also experience skin discoloration around varicose veins and swelling in your feet and ankles. Sometimes, self-care is enough to alleviate these uncomfortable symptoms, including exercising, wearing compression stockings, and keeping your legs elevated as much a you can. If these efforts don’t improve your symptoms, or if your leg pain gets worse, it’s a good idea to seek medical attention from Dr. Bacha.

Untreated symptoms can cause more serious health complications

In rare cases, if your varicose veins are severe enough, they can lead to blood clots, bleeding, or painful skin ulcers.

Veins that are very close the surface of your skin can burst and bleed through your skin. If one leg swells larger than the other and the pain becomes even more persistent, it may indicate the presence of a blood clot. These conditions require prompt medical evaluation.

A variety of vein therapies can help alleviate symptoms

The team at the Anti-Aging Institute offers a variety of varicose vein therapies for both cosmetic and overall health benefits. The latest technologies offer minimally invasive treatments that provide exceptional results with little discomfort and downtime. Two of the most common vein therapies include:

Endovenous laser therapy (EVLT)

Dr. Bacha typically performs this in-office treatment in less than an hour using a tiny needle, catheter, and laser to obliterate the varicose vein. No incision is needed for EVLT, and the procedure has a 98% success rate of relieving symptoms almost immediately.


Sclerotherapy uses a solution to target a varicose vein so it gradually dissolves. Your body simply routes the blood to another healthier vein.

If you experience any of the signs and symptoms of varicose veins and you’d like to explore treatment options that provide get long-term relief, call or click online to request an appointment today.

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