Pregnancy causes varicose veins: truth or myth?

The vast majority of women develop varicose veins and have children link the appearance of varicose veins with their pregnancy. But what really happens with vein circulation during pregnancy?

Why do varicose veins appear during pregnancy?

The presence of the uterus and the embryo in the pelvis is considered to put pressure on the large veins that are there, and that pressure is transferred to the veins of the legs. Observing pregnant women develop varicose veins and the fact that the pregnant uterus is a large mass in the pelvis, led to the logical conclusion that the pregnancy causes varicose veins, a conclusion that was undisputed for many years.

The issue is of course that if the cause of the appearance of varicose veins was the large volume of the embryo and the uterus’s that pressure and obstruct the veins of the pelvis, then the problem wouldn’t be the varicose veins, but this significant edema of the legs and possibly the development of deep vein thrombosis, due to the obstruction of the outflow of the vein blood from the legs.

The most significant reason for the appeared of varicose veins during pregnancy is the fact that during the third trimester the volume of blood that circulates the body of the woman will increase by 40%. The bigger part of that increased blood volume is stored in the legs, whose veins constitute par excellence pools of blood storage in the body. Additionally the increase of hormones during pregnancy affect the vein walls allowing their dilation with the purpose of accommodating the additional blood volume in them, without increasing the pressure of the vein blood. Thus women that had varicose veins before their pregnancy, but where extremely small in order for them to draw attention, during their pregnancy they will perceive their presence as the varicose vein‘s will dilate Due to the effect of the hormones and the extra blood that we circulate the legs. In studies that were made in centers for in vitro fertilization in England, women developed varicose vein‘s during their pregnancies where women that had a pathological function of the vein valves during their Initial examination with a collar duplex. None of the women with like a regular function of the valves in their veins during their initial examination by triplex developed a varicose veins during their pregnancy.

How can I prevent the appearance of varicose veins?

Luckily the condition of the blood circulation in the legs improves significantly after labor, and even though rarely, it might return to the condition it was prior to the pregnancy. Usually, after each pregnancy, the varicose veins worsen. Thus, with each pregnancy the woman that suffers from varicose veins will burden her blood circulation, the symptoms will be more intense and very of complications even greater.

The use of compression stockings help in dealing the symptoms and prevent from thrombosis. It is suggested that they wear them during the day from the morning until night. In light cases the stockings are class I, and go up to the thigh (pressure 18-22 mmHg at the ankles). Many women pretty fair the compression pregnancy leggings. In each case the short compression socks that go up to the knee, are not recommended, due to the fact that at that point the socks end it is extremely common to encounter varicose veins.

The intense pressure in the area of the knee from the compression socks is likely to lead to the clotting of those varicose veins. In more severe cases of varicose vein‘s, and if the vascular surgeon deems it appropriate it can be suggested that the pregnant woman uses anticoagulants as an additional precaution of the appearance of clotting. The anticoagulants are usually heparin of low molecular weight in the form of injections, because the use of anticoagulants from the mouth is contraindicated during pregnancy. These precaution measures are necessary to continue even after the labor for at least a month.

The treatment for varicose veins during pregnancy is not recommended. The best period To start the treatment is after three months from giving birth, when the effect of the pregnancy in the veins is minimised and the results of a treatment is the best possible. The endovenous laser ablation is the best choice in our day. It is an exceptional safe and painless treatment which combines excellent results with the swiftest return of the patient to their daily activities.

The best treatment is always prevention. The general impression of people, and sadly, many doctors is that a woman must postpone the treatment for her vocals rains later, because I potential pregnancy might bring them back. This is utterly wrong. The benefit of the treatment before a possible pregnancy ensures significantly the quality of her daily life during pregnancy while it minimises the possibility of complications due to the problems of the blood circulation on the lower extremities.