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PREGNANCY AND VEINS

 

veins August blog b and a picture

It is very common to develop some form of varicose vein problems after going through a pregnancy. This is the time when there is high pressure on the lower extremity venous system. The baby is sitting in the pelvis, putting pressure on the pelvic veins and resulting in increased pressure in the lower extremity veins. This can result in dilated veins that can sometimes return to normal . Unfortunately these dilated veins don’t always improve after you give birth. They can make you uncomfortable or just unhappy with the way they look.

“I guess now I’ll have old woman legs and not be able to wear shorts and skirts.”   Comment from a 20- something eight months pregnant woman

Preventative measures can be taken during pregnancy .  If you are prone to varicose veins, we recommend compression stockings during pregnancy to help protect the distal superficial veins in the legs. You can also elevate your legs and avoid unnecessary prolonged standing and walking, both of which increase the venous pressure in the legs.

Unfortunately there are some patients who develop permanent damage to their leg veins and require treatment to reverse the problems.  Varicose veins can itch or hurt and later on lead to serious problems like swelling and sores that don’t heal well. If the problem is not corrected, future pregnancies cause even more problems and the legs become even worse. We recommend treating the varicose veins as soon as the patient is able to.

We usually wait at least two months after delivery before doing vein treatment procedures. Many women don’t know that they can proceed with treatment within a few months after delivery. We recommend that the patient wear compression stockings and use leg elevation to treat the symptomatic veins In the two months after delivery and make plans for treatment.   The treatment has such a simple recovery that the patient is immediately mobile and able to return to work and family activities.

Varicose vein treatment is covered by insurance. In light of today’s high insurance deductibles, it is worth noting that the insurance deductible will probably have been met at the birth of the baby. So it is not only safe, but economical to go ahead with treatment in the months after delivery before a new insurance year begins.

vein girl running on beach

 

It is always a good feeling seeing a women leave my office feeling good about her legs after treatment.   So many young women express during their pregnancy that they will now probably have to act like what they feel is an older women, hiding their legs, no longer wearing shorts and short skirts….because of the veins they are developing during pregnancy.   Eliminating those varicose veins allows a woman after pregnancy to return to a normal physical and mental state in her life with a spring in her step.