Recognizing and treating varicose and spider veins

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Varicose veins and venous dysfunction affect about 25 percent of the United States population, which is why it's important to know the causes and symptoms of varicose veins.

Dr. John Morris, a vascular surgeon from Mercy Health, talks about possible treatment options available.

Varicose veins are bulging veins under the skin and are usually on the legs, whereas spider veins are smaller and form within the skin.

These veins form from lack of blood flow in the veins; this causes the blood to pool and increase the pressure and size of veins over time.

While they are different entities, they have the same symptoms:

  • Swelling
  • Discomfort
  • Fatigue/Heaviness
  • Skin Discoloration
  • Itching
  • Cramping

Varicose and spider veins might not look great, there are many ways they can be treated to reduce the pain. Compression stockings and leg elevation are good for temporary relief. However if patients are looking for a more permanent solution, there are minimally invasive procedures available that get rid of the pain long term.

If varicose veins aren't treated, it can lead to chronic pain, permanent skin changes, bleeding, ulceration or blood clots.

Mercy Health Physician Partners Vascular Surgeons are board-certified and provide comprehensive diagnostic and therapeutic services. Call (616)-685-7850 or visit to schedule a consultation.

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