Varicose Veins in Pregnancy – What’s the Connection?

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If you are currently pregnant or are thinking about having a baby, vein health should be on your mind. Why? Well, during pregnancy the body undergoes a number of changes, including hormonal fluctuations and weight gain. Both of these factors can contribute to the development of varicose veins and vein disease. This is especially the case if there is a family history of the condition.

Why Do Pregnant Women Get Varicose Veins? As pregnancy progresses, the growing fetus and uterus put pressure on the inferior vena cava, which is a major blood vessel that is responsible for helping return the blood toward the heart. Stress on blood vessels increases as blood volume expands by 45%, on average, as the blood flow rate in the pelvis region continues to decrease. This makes it challenging for the blood in the legs to return toward the heart.

When this occurs, vein valves may become faulty and blood can start to pool in the veins and weaken the wall of the affected blood vessels. This causes vein stretching, sagging, and swelling, which may manifest as prominent spider veins and varicose veins. Vascular changes can also cause swelling and pain in the legs and feet. Varicose veins may improve after childbirth, but they won’t go away completely. Treating your veins between pregnancy can help alleviate symptoms like leg pain and swelling.

Can You Prevent Varicose Veins While Pregnant? Preventative measures for varicose veins and vein disease include:

  • Avoiding sitting or standing for long periods
  • Sleeping on your left side decrease excessive pressure on the inferior vena cava
  • Elevating your legs
  • Exercising to improve your blood circulation
  • Wearing compression stockings to help prevent the blood from pooling in your legs

Should Vein Screenings Be Part of Prenatal Healthcare? Dr. Kamran Goudarzi believes so. He has witnessed the connection between changes in vascular health and pregnancy in many patients. Patients with poor venous health who become pregnant are at risk for developing vein-related complications. With treatment, patients with venous insufficiency have overcome swollen, painful legs and varicose veins and reduced their risk for more serious complications like venous ulcers and blood clots.

How Effective Is Vein Disease Treatment? In part one of this two-part episode of the Nice Living with Dr. Kamran Podcast, a young mother shares her story of how she overcame a severe case of vein disease with the help of modern vein treatment at Scarless Vein Care by Dr. Kamran. Katie discusses her symptoms, initial frustrations finding help, and discovering relief and results beyond what she imagined. In part two of this podcast episode, Dr. Kamran further explains the connection between venous insufficiency and varicose veins during pregnancy and how vein disease is more common in young people than many realize.

Are You Concerned About Your Vein Health? Whether you are currently expecting or have already welcomed your little one/s into the world, our team at Scarless Vein Care by Dr. Kamran is here for you. Call our office to learn about a complimentary consultation and learn more about treatment options at our state-of-the-art vein centers in Wilmington, NC and Leland, NC.

Dr Kamran Scarless Vein HeadshotInternationally recognized as a pioneer in the field of phlebology and vascular surgery, Dr. Kamran has been providing general, thoracic, vascular, laparoscopic, and both upper and lower endoscopic surgeries for more than 40 years. As one of the first physicians and centers in the state of North Carolina to offer intravascular laser ablation for the treatment of varicose veins, Dr. Kamran is known for outstanding patient outcomes and satisfaction rates.

Categories: Insights