Veins contain special one-way valves to stop blood flowing back the wrong way. If these valves are damaged and stop working properly, pressure can build up in the vessels.
Should anything cause the pressure in the superficial (smaller and closer to the skin) veins in your leg to build up, they will twist and enlarge, eventually causing blue or dark purple lines to appear on the leg. These are known as varicose veins.
Sometimes smaller veins are affected, causing a thin, spider-like appearance on the legs. These are known as thread veins or spider veins.
Although varicose veins and thread veins are not life-threatening conditions, they can be unsightly, and many people find their confidence and self-image is affected by them. Clothing may be chosen specifically because it covers up the legs and prevents the varicose veins from being seen.
Varicose veins will not go away without medical intervention. Indeed, left untreated they will often become larger and more prominent over time.
If you are unhappy with your varicose veins, effective treatments are available to improve the appearance of your legs. At BMI The Park Hospital, we can arrange an appointment for you with an experienced Consultant to discuss treatment options.