Varicose veins

Varicose veins overview

Are you curious about what causes those twisted, bulging veins in your legs and how to treat them? We'll guide you through the step-by-step pathway from diagnosis to treatment, ensuring you understand every phase of the journey. Whether you're seeking relief from discomfort or aiming for cosmetic improvement, this article is your essential resource for all things related to varicose veins. Join us in uncovering the path to healthier veins and improved well-being.

What are varicose veins?

Varicose veins are enlarged, twisted veins that commonly appear in the legs. They occur when the valves in the veins, which normally ensure blood flows towards the heart, become weak or damaged. This weakness causes blood to accumulate in the veins, leading to swelling and the characteristic twisted, bulging appearance. Often blue or dark purple, these veins can cause discomfort and are not just a cosmetic issue. Risk factors include ageing, prolonged standing, obesity, pregnancy, and genetics. While sometimes treated for aesthetic reasons, addressing them can also relieve symptoms like pain, swelling, and fatigue in the legs.

In the following sections you'll learn more about varicose veins, and how they are easily treated

Causes

Varicose veins occur when there's too much pressure in the veins in your legs, which are only meant to handle low pressure. There are a few reasons why this can happen:

  1. Blockage in Deep Veins: This is often caused by a deep vein thrombosis (DVT). DVT can happen after surgery, if you have to stay in bed for a long time because you're sick, or if your leg movement is limited, like when it's in a cast after a break. Sometimes, a DVT can damage the valves in your deep veins, which can be hard to fix.
  2. Weak Calf Muscles: If your calf muscles are very weak, it can lead to problems with your veins. This is because your calf muscles help pump blood through your veins. If they're weak, they can't do this job well, and this can also cause the valves in your veins to fail.
  3. Valve Problems: The most common cause of varicose veins and venous insufficiency is when your veins don't work properly. This can be due to:
    • Genetic issues with the valves
    • Hormonal changes, like during pregnancy
    • Injury to the veins
    • Past DVT
    • Getting older (though people of any age can get varicose veins)
    • Being overweight
    • Jobs where you stand a lot without moving much, or having weak calf muscles
Learn more about what causes varicose veins

Symptoms

Varicose veins can cause many problems in your legs, such as swelling, itching, pain, feeling like your legs won't stay still, and skin issues like varicose eczema. They can sometimes bleed, especially in older people, even from a small injury. These veins can also lead to skin damage and, in some cases, painful open sores that take a long time to heal if not treated properly.

People with varicose veins often experience some of these issues. Many don't realise how much their veins were bothering them until after they get treatment and notice a big improvement in how their legs feel – like getting a new pair of legs!

It's important not to ignore varicose veins for three main reasons:

  1. They look bad. Many people feel embarrassed about how their veins look and avoid showing their legs, even to their partners. This can stop them from enjoying sports, holidays, and other fun activities. For some, like actors and models, it can even affect their jobs. Most people are very happy with how their legs look after getting treatment.
  2. They cause discomfort. The pain and discomfort from varicose veins aren't directly from the veins themselves but from the pressure they create. Many people suffer from symptoms like tired legs, itching, throbbing, restlessness, and aching. These usually get better quickly after treatments like EVLA and RFA.
  3. They can lead to serious skin issues and ulcers. Not everyone with varicose veins will get ulcers, but many leg ulcers happen because of the same issues that cause varicose veins. Treating the veins can greatly lower the risk of getting leg ulcers.
Not sure if you have varicose veins? Learn more here

Additional information

Embark on a deeper exploration of varicose veins through our extensive archive of articles. We offer a treasure trove of information, delving into every aspect of this common condition. Our collection covers a broad range of topics, from detailed explanations of the causes and risk factors of varicose veins to insights into the latest treatment options and lifestyle adjustments for managing symptoms. Whether you're seeking guidance on prevention, curious about the latest medical advancements, or interested in understanding the daily impacts of this condition, our rich archive is a comprehensive resource for anyone looking to expand their knowledge on varicose veins. Join us in uncovering the many facets of this intriguing vascular issue.

Learn more in our article archive

Before and after images

Your pathway to healthy legs

At UK Vein Care, we provide a streamlined and patient-focused approach to treating varicose veins, ensuring comfort and effectiveness every step of the way. Our treatment pathway consists of three key stages; Consultation, Treatment and Check-Up.

With our dedicated team and comprehensive pathway, we're committed to guiding you towards relief from varicose veins and improved vascular health.

1. Consultation

Initial Consultation and Diagnosis: Your journey begins with a comprehensive consultation, where our experts will assess your condition. Utilising a duplex ultrasound scan, we accurately diagnose the severity and specifics of your varicose veins. This allows us to analyse the veins in detail and formulate a tailored treatment plan.

Learn much more here

2. Treatment

Personalised Treatment: Based on your unique diagnosis, we proceed with the most effective treatment options. Our range of procedures, selected to suit your specific needs, aims to deliver the best results with minimal discomfort. Whether it involves sclerotherapy, laser treatments, or other advanced techniques, our goal is to address the root cause of your varicose veins efficiently and safely.

Learn much more here

3. Check-Up

Post-Treatment Check-Up: If needed we can schedule a follow-up appointment to ensure everything is healing as expected. This step is often not necessary, but can provide peace of mind if you would have any questions or concerns

Learn much more here

Treatment methods

At UK Vein Care, we are dedicated to providing advanced and effective solutions for varicose veins. Our range of treatment procedures is designed to cater to various needs and severities of this condition, ensuring that each patient receives personalised care.

Our team of specialists is committed to guiding you through these options, ensuring you receive the most suitable treatment for your varicose veins. With our expertise and state-of-the-art procedures, we aim to deliver comfort, care, and effective results.

Here's an overview of our primary treatment options.

Endevenous Laser Ablation (EVLA)

A minimally invasive procedure using laser energy to close off problem veins. It's a preferred method for its precision and quick recovery time.

Learn much more here

Foam Sclerotherapy

This involves injecting a special foam into the veins, causing them to collapse and fade. It's particularly effective for smaller varicose veins and spider veins.

Learn much more here

Avulsions / Phlebectomies

These are minor surgical procedures to remove superficial veins through small incisions, often used in combination with other treatments for comprehensive results.

Learn much more here

Prices

We strive for transparency in our pricing structure. All prices are provided upfront and are fixed, encompassing both the clinic and consultant charges. There are no "from" prices or hidden fees.

Learn much more here
3 simple steps

Valve Dysfunction: The Primary Culprit

Learn more about what you can expect before, during, and after your treatment.

Frequently

asked questions

Not sure what to expect? See common questions and answers regarding the treatment of varicose veins here
Why do you get varicose veins?
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In the veins are small valves that regulate the flow of blood towards the heart. These flaps wear over time, and as this wear increases, the risk of the flaps not holding tight increases. What then happens is that the blood flows back and collects in pools under the vein valves. It is these pools that form varicose veins.
Why gets varicose veins?
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About thirty percent of all people in Sweden suffer from varicose veins at some point in their lives. Varicose veins are hereditary, so if one of your parents has had varicose veins, you are genetically predisposed to developing varicose veins yourself.
What are the most common cause of varicose veins?
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Genetics are the most common cause of varicose veins, and varicose veins are almost 100 percent hereditary. In addition to heredity, varicose veins are also often caused by smoking, obesity, inactivity and pregnancy.
Can I do anything myself to prevent varicose veins?
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Varicose veins cannot be completely prevented, but you can reduce the risk of occurrence by taking certain precautions, such as maintaining a healthy and active lifestyle, where the focus is on good blood circulation in the legs.
Are varicose veins hereditary?
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A very large percentage of people who have varicose veins get them because of heredity. You are genetically predisposed to varicose veins if your mother or father had varicose veins.
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Pricing

Simple no-tricks pricing

The total costs involved in diagnosing and treating your varicose veins are outlined below. The primary treatment plan is likely to be either Endovenous Laser Ablation (EVLA) or Foam Sclerotherapy, depending on the severity of your varicose veins. We have differentiated prices depending on your location in the north or south of England. See below.
Treatment
Treatments
One leg
Both Legs*
Foam sclerotherapy
Ultrasound-guided foam sclerotherapy is the gold-standard treatment option for varicose veins when EVLA is not required, as recommended by the National Institute of Health and Care Excellence (NICE). It’s worth noting, though, that the vast majority of patients with varicose veins do require EVLA.
One leg
£680
Both Legs*
£780
Endovenous Laser Ablation (EVLA)
Endovenous laser ablation, often referred to as EVLA (or EVLT), is the gold-standard treatment for varicose veins – as recommended by the National Institute of Health and Care Excellence (NICE).
One leg
£1930
Both Legs*
£2530
Avulsions / Foam sclerotherapy
As a complement to laser treatment or foam sclerotherapy on the insufficient veins, you might need a complementary treatment to tackle the visible veins on the legs. This can be done by either avulsions, sclerotherapy, or both and gives the most holistic result. Some patients need several rounds of complementary treatments to achieve a satisfactory result.
One leg
£500
Both Legs*
£600

*Treatment prices for both legs, are dependent on both legs being treated at the same time. If two appointments are required the price will increase.

Consultation
£250
No hidden fees or costs
Book a consultation
Utilising a duplex ultrasound scan, we accurately diagnose the severity and specifics of your varicose veins.
Ultrasound scan
Tailored treatment plan
Fixed treatment price offer
1 on 1 time with your surgeon
4.9 overall rating
Treatment
Treatments
One leg
Both Legs*
Foam sclerotherapy
Ultrasound-guided foam sclerotherapy is the gold-standard treatment option for varicose veins when EVLA is not required, as recommended by the National Institute of Health and Care Excellence (NICE). It’s worth noting, though, that the vast majority of patients with varicose veins do require EVLA.
One leg
£730
Both Legs*
£830
Endovenous Laser Ablation (EVLA)
Endovenous laser ablation, often referred to as EVLA (or EVLT), is the gold-standard treatment for varicose veins – as recommended by the National Institute of Health and Care Excellence (NICE).
One leg
£2400
Both Legs*
£2800
Avulsions / Foam sclerotherapy
As a complement to laser treatment or foam sclerotherapy on the insufficient veins, you might need a complementary treatment to tackle the visible veins on the legs. This can be done by either avulsions, sclerotherapy, or both and gives the most holistic result. Some patients need several rounds of complementary treatments to achieve a satisfactory result.
One leg
£550
Both Legs*
£650

*Treatment prices for both legs, are dependent on both legs being treated at the same time. If two appointments are required the price will increase.

Consultation
£300
No hidden fees or costs
Book a consultation
Utilising a duplex ultrasound scan, we accurately diagnose the severity and specifics of your varicose veins.
Ultrasound scan
Tailored treatment plan
Fixed treatment price offer
1 on 1 time with your surgeon
4.9 overall rating
Treatment
Treatments
One leg
Both Legs*
Foam sclerotherapy
Ultrasound-guided foam sclerotherapy is the gold-standard treatment option for varicose veins when EVLA is not required, as recommended by the National Institute of Health and Care Excellence (NICE). It’s worth noting, though, that the vast majority of patients with varicose veins do require EVLA.
One leg
£730
Both Legs*
£830
Endovenous Laser Ablation (EVLA)
Endovenous laser ablation, often referred to as EVLA (or EVLT), is the gold-standard treatment for varicose veins – as recommended by the National Institute of Health and Care Excellence (NICE).
One leg
£2400
Both Legs*
£2800
Avulsions / Foam sclerotherapy
As a complement to laser treatment or foam sclerotherapy on the insufficient veins, you might need a complementary treatment to tackle the visible veins on the legs. This can be done by either avulsions, sclerotherapy, or both and gives the most holistic result. Some patients need several rounds of complementary treatments to achieve a satisfactory result.
One leg
£550
Both Legs*
£650

*Treatment prices for both legs, are dependent on both legs being treated at the same time. If two appointments are required the price will increase.

Consultation
£300
No hidden fees or costs
Book a consultation
Utilising a duplex ultrasound scan, we accurately diagnose the severity and specifics of your varicose veins.
Ultrasound scan
Tailored treatment plan
Fixed treatment price offer
1 on 1 time with your surgeon
4.9 overall rating
Before and after images

Results from previous patients we have helped

Caroline
"The overall impression has been very good. I felt very safe throughout the entire treatment process".
Anne
“You get a very good treatment here and the consultation and treatment process made me feel very welcome”.
Eva
“Now I can work full-time gain and go for a walk, which I haven’t done since the summer. Now, a new life will begin“.
More patient stories
NHS waiting times

29-48 weeks

Our waiting times

0-3 weeks

Learn more about varicose veins
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