Compression Therapy for Varicose Veins

Compression Therapy for Varicose Veins

Varicose veins are those unsightly bulging veins that you often see on legs or feet. If you have them, you’re probably aware of the discomfort or pain they can cause—especially after a long day of standing or sitting.

Compression therapy helps reduce the inflammation and pain caused by varicose veins—it also improves poor blood circulation.

Is compression therapy always the best way to treat varicose veins? And how does compression therapy for varicose veins work?

Here are the answers.


What Are Varicose Veins?

People usually find varicose veins—those enlarged and twisted veins—on their calves, ankles, and/or thighs. But they can be almost anywhere on your body. The veins are dark purple or blue and aren’t often a medical concern.

However, for many people, varicose veins are a cosmetic concern; they cause embarrassment when you’re wearing shorts, a skirt, or a bathing suit.

Other times, varicose veins can reveal a budding health issue or even pose a health risk themselves.

Varicose veins are caused by valve problems within the veins. Valves become damaged or weak and blood circulation is affected; the blood begins to pool in the legs and veins enlarge.


A woman sitting on a couch rubbing her aching leg


Some symptoms associated with varicose veins include:

  • Swelling in the ankles or legs
  • A feeling of heaviness in your legs
  • Itching around the vein area
  • Achiness or pain in your legs
  • Skin discoloration around the veins

At times, untreated varicose veins lead to other health issues, including venous ulcerations or chronic venous insufficiency (CVI).

The weakening of vein walls from chronic vein valve problems is a common cause of CVI. Blood flow toward the heart decreases and instead blood pools in the legs. CVI itself is not life-threatening but can lead to serious health complications including deep vein thrombosis, pulmonary embolism, and leg ulcers.

Read about warning signs and diagnosing varicose vein disease.


Causes of Varicose Veins

Factors that contribute to the development of varicose veins include:

  • A sedentary lifestyle
  • Being overweight
  • Pregnancy
  • Aging
  • Increased blood pressure in the veins


What is Compression Therapy?

Many vein doctors consider compression therapy to be the first line of treatment for mild-to-moderate varicose veins. They often suggest combining compression therapy with leg elevation or movement exercises.

Compression therapy helps eliminate many of the physical symptoms associated with varicose veins. It can also help with leg or foot discomfort associated with:

  • Chronic venous insufficiency
  • Deep vein thrombosis (DVT)
  • Swelling of the legs, ankles, and feet
  • Pregnancy


An infographic showing how compression socks improve blood flow


Compression treatment is non-invasive; it simply involves wearing compression (elastic) socks, stockings, or wraps. By applying continuous pressure to your legs and squeezing leg muscles, the compression clothing helps push blood upward against gravity, making it easier for blood to flow back to your heart.

This treatment also keeps fluid from building up in the legs, feet, and ankles, prevents blood clots, and helps ulcers heal on the skin.

Your legs will feel:

  • More comfortable
  • Less painful
  • Less tired
  • Less swollen
  • Better supported

Wearing the proper compression stockings will also help keep veins from getting worse.

A vein specialist can evaluate your vein health and recommend the exact type and amount of compression that will work best for you. You can purchase some compression stockings over the counter, while others require a prescription.

Compression stockings are also often recommended both before and after vein treatment.

Learn more about the symptoms and causes of poor circulation in the legs and feet.


Types of Compression Therapy


Closeup of a hiker’s legs with compression socks on.


Compression socks

Compression socks may extend to different lengths, from just over the ankle to up to your knee.

If you’re standing or sitting for extended periods during the day, ankle compression socks can keep your feet feeling comfortable.

Manufacturers rate socks to show the pressure they provide.

Units of measurement are listed as “mmHg,” which stands for millimeters of mercury—a measurement of pressure. Compression sock ratings include:

  • Low—less than 20 mmHg—do not require a prescription
  • Medium—20-30 mmHg—require a prescription
  • High—More than 30 mmHg—require a prescription

If you have moderate-to-severe varicose veins, your doctor will probably write you a prescription for compression socks for pain relief and improved circulation.


Compression Stockings


A woman putting  on compression stockings


Compression socks are a common type of compression wear. They reach up to the knee. Longer compression stockings (sleeves or tights) are available if swelling goes higher than your knee.

Compression stockings can be rated or not rated for pressure. The socks and stockings should feel comfortably snug but shouldn’t feel overly tight or painful.


Velcro Wraps and Bandages

These compression items are helpful for people who have trouble putting on socks. The elastic bandages often require several layers while wraps can have convenient Velcro closures.

Inflatable garments is another category of compression-wear. Users inflate these devices to a specific amount of pressure. They’re generally used by athletes to reduce muscle soreness and improve blood circulation to speed recovery.


Other Treatments for Varicose Veins

While compression garments usually help reduce discomfort caused by varicose veins, they cannot fix varicose veins or improve their physical appearance.

However, today there are many varicose vein treatments that will permanently eliminate existing varicose and spider veins.

Treatments for the elimination of varicose veins include:


Is Compression Therapy for You?

There are some medical conditions that make it unsafe to use compression therapy. One of these conditions is peripheral artery disease (PAD). Here, compression therapy would be harmful since the blood vessels in the legs would narrow and reduce blood flow.

It’s always recommended that you consult your doctor first before you start compression therapy.

Here’s more about vein conditions and ways to improve your vein health.

For a free varicose vein screening, contact us at The New Jersey Vein and Vascular Center.

Sclerotherapy – How Long Does It Last?

Sclerotherapy – How Long Does It Last?

The state-of-the-art treatment for eliminating unsightly or bothersome veins is sclerotherapy. This popular, minimally invasive treatment is highly effective in reducing the symptoms and appearance of certain veins. But a common question about sclerotherapy is how long does it last?


What Is Sclerotherapy?

Vein doctors consider sclerotherapy to be the best and most effective treatment for spider and reticular veins, and some smaller varicose veins.

Some people want vein treatment because they are bothered by the veins’ appearance, while some suffer with uncomfortable symptoms. Sclerotherapy will make both types of patients happy. However, insurance will usually only cover treatment costs if it’s a medical necessity.

Sclerotherapy treatment is used to treat veins on the calves, thighs, and other places on your body. It’s a treatment that permanently eliminates existing troubling veins.

During sclerotherapy, your doctor will inject a specialized solution into the vein. The vein becomes irritated and collapses. Blood can’t flow through the damaged vein and instead moves through a nearby healthy vein.

The collapsed vein is naturally reabsorbed into other tissue and is no longer seen through the skin nor painful for the patient.


About the Sclerotherapy Treatment

A sclerotherapy treatment can be as short as 15 minutes or as long as an hour. Patients enjoy the fact that the procedure does not require any anesthesia.

Treatment time will in part depend on how many veins are being treated and the condition of the veins being treated.

If only a few small spider veins in close proximity to one another are to be removed, you might only need one treatment session.

If many veins of various sizes and locations need to be treated, the varicose vein specialist will need to schedule several treatments—usually about a month apart. The varicose vein specialist often treats all veins in two to four sessions.

At the start of the procedure, the medical professional applies numbing cream to the treatment area. This will keep the patient from feeling any pain when the sclerosing agent is injected.

With visual sclerotherapy, the doctor injects a sclerosing agent directly into the vein. This treatment works extremely well for spider veins and reticular veins.

Ultrasound-guided sclerotherapy is often the best way to treat reticular veins and some varicose veins.

Most people resume their regular activities after the procedure. However, you will want to avoid strenuous activity for about a week. You should also avoid hot showers and baths, and direct sunlight.


A woman sitting on her bed putting on compression stockings.


Your varicose vein doctor may direct you to wear compression socks or stockings for up to two weeks following the treatment—especially when you expect to be on your feet for extended periods of time. Walking for a half-hour a day for the first few weeks will help with results and recovery.

Soon you will see the results you want. With spider veins, you will enjoy results in as little as three to six weeks, with up to 80% of treated veins disappearing after each treatment. Larger veins may take longer to show results, taking three to four months.

Here you can watch an actual demonstration of veins disappearing after sclerotherapy treatment.



How Long Does Sclerotherapy Treatment Last?

Sclerotherapy treatment produces long-lasting results. More precisely, the treated veins will permanently fade away as they collapse and will not be used again by your body. They will never need further treatment.

However, if the original causes leading to spider and reticular vein development persist, new veins will likely develop as time goes on. People often confuse these new veins with a reappearance of the old veins, but this is never the case.

Sclerotherapy treatment is effective and permanent. But it does nothing to keep new problem veins from developing.

Are new problem veins likely to develop after treatment? It depends on whether the causing conditions still exist.


A woman sitting at a desk at working on her laptop.


These conditions include:

  • Family history
  • Being female
  • Pregnancy or taking birth-control or hormone replacement pills
  • Being overweight
  • Taking certain medications
  • Continuously sitting or standing for long periods of time
  • Aging

Hereditary factors will strongly determine whether you develop more veins in the future. In fact, if both of your parents have varicose veins, you have a probability of about 90% of developing them again in the future. Happily, should new problem veins develop, sclerotherapy will successfully eliminate these new veins too.


Are You a Good Candidate for Sclerotherapy?

Your overall health will determine whether you’re a suitable candidate for this treatment. A consultation with a varicose vein doctor will give you a definitive answer. Happily, most people who are interested in this treatment are excellent candidates.

If you are a woman who is pregnant or breastfeeding, you will need to hold off treatment until after delivery or until breastfeeding concludes.


A close-up of a woman’s healthy and attractive legs


How to Help Keep New Problem Veins from Developing

After sclerotherapy you will want to keep your legs looking and feeling great. The key to keeping new spider or varicose veins from developing is to work toward a strong vascular system.

This includes:

  • Eating a balanced diet, low in salt, with lots of fresh fruits and veggies
  • Exercising regularly
  • Keeping at or getting to a healthy weight
  • Avoiding putting unnecessary stress on your body
  • Avoiding high heels
  • Avoiding sitting or standing continuously for long amounts of time
  • Walking daily
  • Staying on certain medications—check with your doctor
  • Wearing compression socks when flying or taking a long car trip

Contact us at The New Jersey Vein and Vascular Center to learn more about sclerotherapy treatment with our vein specialist.

Warning Signs and Diagnosing Varicose Vein Disease

Warning Signs and Diagnosing Varicose Vein Disease

Learn the warning signs and why a proper diagnosis of varicose vein disease is so important.

Do you get cramps in your legs overnight or have restless legs? Are your legs often itchy for no apparent reason? The cause of your discomfort may have been misdiagnosed as neuropathy or another cause when the actual cause is varicose veins.

Some other medical conditions may present many of the same symptoms. A vein specialist has the experience and technology required for an accurate diagnosis.

The only way to accurately diagnose varicose vein disease is with a reflux ultrasound examination by an experienced vein specialist. When it comes to your vein health, a proper diagnosis is essential so that the issue isn’t over-treated or under-treated.


A Reassuring Word About Varicose Veins

Varicose veins are rarely a serious medical condition. In fact, millions of Americans have varicose veins. The Cleveland Clinic reports that 1 in every 3 adults has varicose veins. For many, they are purely an aesthetic problem. Other times, varicose veins cause annoying symptoms that will relieved by, but don’t require immediate medical attention.

Still, for some, varicose veins can cause chronic venous insufficiency. This is a dangerous medical condition related to blood circulation. The good news is a vein specialist can correctly diagnose and treat it.


More About Chronic Venous Insufficiency

Chronic venous insufficiency is not an uncommon problem for people who have varicose veins. Cleveland Clinic also reports that 1 in every 50 adults with varicose veins eventually develops chronic venous insufficiency.

Damaged veins cause chronic vein insufficiency. Leg veins keep blood flowing back to your heart. But when chronic venous insufficiency occurs, blood flows improperly or not at all.

Learn the warning signs and seek a vein specialist for a proper diagnosis of  varicose veins and venous insufficiency.


Blood flow in normal leg veins vs blood flow in varicose veins


With chronic venous insufficiency, veins can no longer open and close to properly regulate blood flow; blood pools in the veins instead of flowing toward the heart. Blood may even flow backwards.

The pooling blood creates extra pressure on the vein. The result can be uncomfortable swelling, ulcers, insufficient blood flow, and possible life-threatening blood clots.

This condition is most common in people over the age 50, with increasing risk as you further age.

Read more about chronic vein insufficiency.


Medical Conditions That Can Mimic Varicose Veins

There are other medical conditions that present many of the same symptoms of varicose veins.

They include:

  • Tendonitis (inflammation of the tendons)
  • Injuries to ligaments
  • Osteoarthritis (a common form of arthritis)
  • Sciatica (caused by pressure on the sciatic nerve)
  • Osteomyelitis (a bone infection)
  • Peripheral neuropathy (damage to nerves—often in the feet)
  • Arterial insufficiency (a slowing of blood in arteries)

If you have any of these conditions, it’s critical that you receive a proper diagnosis to ensure that you get the medical attention that you need.


When to Speak to a Doctor


An older woman in a chair rubbing her painful leg.


While varicose veins aren’t usually cause for concern, speak to a doctor if:

  • The veins are painful or make you feel uncomfortable
  • Leg and vein pain is interfering with your sleep
  • The skin near the veins is irritated or annoying

Learn more about when to see a doctor for leg pain.


Get an Accurate Diagnosis with a Reflux Ultrasound Examination

To properly diagnose your varicose vein condition, and even determine if you have varicose veins, it’s best to consult a vein specialist.

First, there will be a physical examination of your legs, looking for swelling or other developments. The doctor will ask questions about your leg pain experience.


A close-up of legs with varicose veins that require treatment.


Afterwards you should have a reflux venous ultrasound examination. It is important that a qualified physician and ultrasound technologist perform this exam.

With this imaging technology, the doctor can definitively determine if the veins in the legs are functioning properly. It will also identify where some veins may be having problems or need treatment.

This test is completely non-invasive and painless.

See what our vein specialist, Dr. Stuart Miller, has to say about the importance of an accurate reflux ultrasound examination.



At NJVVC, our vein doctor, Dr. Stuart Miller, specializes in properly performing and analyzing the results of a reflux ultrasound examination. It is imperative to administer and analyze this test properly to ensure accurate diagnosis and subsequent treatment. False negatives or false positives in this exam will lead to a vein condition being over-treated or under-treated—and can even lead to a wrong diagnosis altogether.


Common Symptoms of Varicose Veins

Leg Aches

Legs ache at the end of the day or after long periods of standing and/or sitting.


Physical Appearance of Veins

You see twisted rope-like bulges under the skin. They can look blueish or red. Sometimes you can’t see veins that are far below the skin’s surface.


Leg and/or Foot Swelling or Heaviness

Legs feel unusually heavy and make running or even walking uncomfortable or painful.

You often see swelling of feet and ankles.


Burning, Throbbing, Aching


You feel an itching sensation around the veins, or on your legs before veins are even visible.


Restless Legs or Leg Cramps at Night

Red Spots on Lower Legs/Shiny Legs

Red spots can be a sign of a burst vein.


Hyperpigmentation Around Ankles

Commonly seen with long-existing varicose veins.


Avoid These Complications of Varicose Veins with Proper Diagnosis

Blood Clots

Blood clots in veins can lead to serious swelling of the vein (thrombophlebitis) or deep vein thrombosis (DVT). DVT can lead to a life-threatening pulmonary embolism.



A varicose vein near the surface of the skin may bleed if you bump your leg. This bleeding can be difficult to stop. Elevate your leg and apply pressure; get immediate medical care if you cannot stop the bleeding.



A leg ulcer or wound will need to be cleaned regularly and bandaged properly.


Contact us at the New Jersey Vein and Vascular Center (NJVVC) for non-invasive vascular imaging studies, second opinions of imaging studies, and minimally invasive endovascular services.

Orthopedic Surgery & Varicose Veins – What you need to know

Orthopedic Surgery & Varicose Veins – What you need to know

Did you know knee replacement surgery or treatment of other orthopedic injuries can significantly affect vein health? Or that sometimes, varicose vein problems can be the actual cause of knee pain?

Here’s information about orthopedic surgery and varicose veins—what you need to know.


CVI, Varicose Veins, DVT, and Orthopedic Surgery

First, a few definitions to help clarify our discussion.


Chronic Venous Insufficiency (CVI)

Chronic venous insufficiency (CVI) is a medical condition where damaged veins in the leg are unable to pump blood in the proper direction—to the heart. Blood pools in the veins. The veins become large and are called varicose veins.


Varicose Veins

Close-up of woman’s legs with varicose veins on path

Varicose veins, often occurring in the legs, usually bulge just below the skin’s surface. They look twisted and enlarged and can be blue, red, or skin colored.

Common symptoms of varicose veins in the leg include:

  • Pain or discomfort
  • Swelling
  • Aching and heaviness
  • Itchiness


Deep Vein Thrombosis (DVT)

DVT is a common and serious cause of chronic venous insufficiency. With DVT, a blood clot has formed and damaged the valve in the vein.

A person is more at risk for DVT if they are older, obese, smoke, have a family history, or take certain medications.

Signs of deep vein thrombosis include:

  • Persistent pain in leg
  • Warm, red, tender skin
  • Swelling of the calf, ankle, foot, or thigh

Deep vein thrombosis can become life-threatening if a blood clot breaks off and travels to the lungs.


Orthopedic Surgery

Orthopedic surgery is surgery performed on:

  • Bones
  • Muscles
  • Ligaments
  • Tendons
  • Joints


Orthopedic Surgery Can Cause Vascular Problems

Orthopedic surgery, such as knee replacement or hip surgery, carries a risk of causing DVT.

Thankfully, there is now technology that makes it easy for a vein specialist to determine if a person is experiencing vein problems. And there are effective treatments for these problems, including DVT.

It’s very important that post-surgical patients remain vigilant about this possibility and contact their doctor if they experience signs of DVT.

It’s good to know that most DVT occurrences in the veins of the calf usually go away on their own without medical intervention. However, this reassuring fact doesn’t mean you should ever ignore any DVT signs you’re experiencing.

At NJVVC, our patients benefit from the most modern technology available for diagnosing and treating vein problems.

Watch and listen to our varicose veins specialist, Dr. Stuart Miller, as he explains the signs, symptoms, and treatment of varicose veins and other vein problems.


Have Leg Veins Assessed Before Knee Replacement Surgery

If you have been told you need knee replacement surgery, knee arthroscopy, or hip replacement surgery, first visit a vein specialist. There are several important reasons why.


The Problem May Be in Your Veins!

Sometimes, the cause of knee pain is actually venous insufficiency. And only vein treatment will correct this—not knee surgery.


Vein Treatment Will Improve Your Post-Surgical Recovery

Many patients experience knee joint arthritis and venous insufficiency at the same time. This is because these two conditions most often occur in older adults.

If you have both arthritis and venous insufficiency, be sure to address your vein problems first. It will help with your post-operative recovery in these ways:

  • You’ll have a greatly reduced chance of developing DVT
  • There will be less swelling of the leg
  • The surgical wound will heal better

Sometimes, treatment by a varicose vein treatment doctor is so effective in relieving knee pain that surgery can be put off for a while or even be cancelled altogether.

A person’s knee after knee surgery with stitches and bandages on it

It’s always a good idea to first opt for this less invasive treatment before undergoing invasive knee surgery.

A comprehensive vein evaluation by our vascular specialist is completely non-invasive and non-painful.


Prior Orthopedic Injuries

Have you had a prior orthopedic injury such as a broken leg or ankle sprain? If so, you may be more likely to develop varicose veins later in life if you already have several other risk factors, including:

  • Sitting or standing for long times each day
  • A family history of varicose veins
  • Older age
  • Are female
  • Are overweight

All orthopedic injuries in the leg won’t necessarily cause you to develop varicose veins later, but they do increase the risk.


Why Orthopedic Injury/Surgery Can Cause Varicose Veins

There are several ways an orthopedic injury or surgery can contribute to varicose vein development, including:

A young man in leg cast lounges on a couch looking bored

  • A cast or recovery results in long immobilization of an area of the leg
  • Altering how you put pressure on a leg or foot can, over time, add additional pressure on specific veins in the same or other leg

Sometimes, if you have a leg injury along with a predisposition to varicose veins, it shortens the time before varicose veins first appear.


How to Reduce Your Risk of Varicose Veins After Orthopedic Surgery

There are ways to reduce your long-term risk of varicose veins even after an injury or surgery.

How blood flows in the leg with compression socks and without compression socks

They are:

  • Keep your weight at a healthy level
  • Stay active and avoid sitting for prolong periods of time
  • Wear compression socks to help blood circulation


Tourniquets in Orthopedic Surgery

Surgeons use a tourniquet in orthopedic surgery to reduce blood loss and create a clearer area for the orthopedic surgeon to operate on.

The NIH has reported that using a tourniquet in orthopedic surgery on the lower extremities increases the incidence of deep venous thrombosis. It calls for further study and minimized non-necessary tourniquet use in surgery on high-risk patients.


Contact NJVVC for a Free Vascular Consultation

Complete and submit your consultation request form here.

Spider Veins vs. Reticular Veins … what’s the Difference?

Spider Veins vs. Reticular Veins … what’s the Difference?

Most people know the difference between spider veins and varicose veins. But what about spider veins vs. reticular veins? What’s the difference?

Veins are the structures that bring blood up from your legs and back to your heart. Three major vein issues that people commonly notice on their body are:

  • Spider veins
  • Reticular veins
  • Varicose veins


How Can I Tell the Difference Between Veins?

Spider Veins


Doctor using a magnifying glass to look at spider veins on a person’s legs


Spider veins, also called telangiectasias, are the smallest veins measuring 1mm or less. They appear close to the surface of the skin and often take on a “tree-like” appearance with the veins looking like tree branches.

Spider veins mainly occur on the thighs, ankles, or calves

These veins can vary in color, ranging from blue/purple, to red or pink.

Usually, these veins don’t cause any physical symptoms unless they occur in larger clusters. Some people may feel slight discomfort in a heavily veined area.


Reticular veins


Reticular veins on the back of a leg


Reticular veins measure between 1mm and 3mm in diameter and are located just below the skin’s surface. They are slightly larger than spider veins.

Reticular veins exist a little deeper in the skin than spider veins, which run more along the surface. Unlike varicose veins, they don’t protrude from beneath the skin.

Reticular veins are found in the legs—commonly on the back or inner thigh—but can occur on the face, breasts, ankles, or knees.

These veins are usually not a medical problem. More often, people are concerned with the aesthetic issues they cause.

Since reticular veins feed into spider veins, they are also called feeder veins. You often see reticular veins right near spider vein clusters.

These veins are blue/green or purple. However, they can take on a ropey appearance and exist in clusters, giving the skin an unattractive marbled appearance.

Reticular veins, unlike spider veins, are often annoying or painful. The more reticular veins you have in an area, the more annoying they will become.

Common symptoms of reticular veins include:

  • Itching or irritation
  • Tenderness or pain
  • General discomfort in the area
  • Burning
  • Fatigue and heaviness

Spider veins and reticular veins are both referred to as superficial veins.


Let’s Not Forget About Varicose Veins


Stages of the development of varicose veins


Varicose veins are the largest veins. They measure larger than 3mm in diameter. They often bulge out from the skin and usually are purple or blue. Varicose veins are most often found on thighs, calves, ankles, and feet.

Symptoms of varicose veins are similar to the symptoms of reticular veins.


What Causes Reticular Veins and Are They Dangerous?


A pregnant woman pointing to a vein problem in her leg


Reticular veins:

  • Run in families
  • More commonly occur in women than men
  • Can be caused by obesity
  • Can develop during pregnancy
  • Develop with age, especially in people over 50 years old
  • Can be caused by sitting or standing for long periods of time
  • Can have no known cause

However, reticular veins often aren’t reason for concern except for cosmetic reasons. But it’s important to know that reticular veins do indicate that blood is not flowing as well as it could.


Reticular Veins and Venous Insufficiency

Venous insufficiency or prior blood clots cause reticular veins.

Venous insufficiency occurs when blood doesn’t properly flow back to the heart from the feet. Blood pools in the veins.

This, in turn, creates pressure around the veins as well a swelling within the veins. Over time, the walls of the vein become weak and bulge. Veins can twist and skin marbling occurs.

Signs of venous insufficiency are:

  • Visible varicose veins on the skin’s surface
  • Leg pain or cramps
  • Weak legs
  • Tightness in calves
  • Itchy legs
  • Swelling in legs or ankles
  • Leg ulcers
  • Aching or heaviness in legs
  • Skin that thickens or changes color on legs or around ankles


When To See a Doctor for Reticular Veins

There are times when you should see a doctor about vein issues.

Contact a doctor if you are experiencing:

  • Pain or discomfort in or around veins
  • Bleeding veins
  • Ulcers around veins

It’s also a good idea to visit a vein doctor so they can:

  • Diagnose your vein problem with a vascular screening
  • Treat any damaged veins
  • Provide treatment for veins you find cosmetically unattractive

Here you can find out if your vein treatment will be Medicare accepted?


Self-care Treatment for Good Circulation

There are steps you can take to improve blood flow in reticular and other veins.


A car passenger’s wearing compression socks with legs elevated on the dashboard


These at-home solutions for improving blood flow include:

  • Wearing compression socks or stockings
  • Elevating your legs periodically
  • Leaving legs uncrossed when sitting
  • Exercising
  • Avoid sitting for long periods of time
  • Maintaining a healthy weight

These steps may be enough to relieve your discomfort from reticular or varicose veins.


Treatment Options for Reticular Veins

If you continue to have discomfort from reticular or varicose veins, or desire cosmetic treatment for any vein issue, it’s time to see a vein doctor.

Your treatment options will depend on the size and location of your veins and the severity of the venous insufficiency.

Medical treatment of existing reticular veins often prevents the development of associated spider veins. Treatment of reticular veins can also cause nearby spider veins to disappear.


Ultrasound-Guided Sclerotherapy

The National Institute of Health states that “Sclerotherapy, when used with the correct technique, is the most effective method for the management of reticular varices and telangiectases.”

Ultrasound-guided sclerotherapy involves the injection of a sclerosing agent into the vein. The inner walls of the vein collapse and the vein seals itself shut. Blood is naturally directed to other healthier veins. Over the course of a few months, the body reabsorbs the old vein, and it disappears.


FDA-Approved Varithena™


An ink stamp that reads FDA Approved


At NJVVC, we use Varithena for this sclerotherapy treatment. It is an FDA-approved patented microfoam that is extremely well tolerated by patients having sclerotherapy treatment.

No anesthesia is required for this procedure.

Contact NJVVC for a free vascular screening.

Diet and Varicose Veins – What’s the Connection?

Diet and Varicose Veins – What’s the Connection?

There’s an old saying, “You are what you eat.” This is particularly true for vein health. If you have been wondering about diet and varicose veins, you’ll be interested to learn what’s the connection.

While a great diet can’t remove varicose veins, it can lessen symptoms and support better vein health in the future. It can even slow the development of varicose veins.


Diet Affects Varicose Vein Health

It may not surprise you to learn there’s a connection between diet and varicose vein health. But did you know, this connection is quite strong?

The healthier your diet choices are, the healthier your veins will be.

And, adjusting your diet for greater vein health will also have a positive effect on your heart health, blood pressure, and more!

A healthful vein-supporting diet will:

  • Improve blood circulation
  • Support blood vessels
  • Keep vein pressure to a healthy minimum

If you already have varicose veins, a good diet can lessen the severity of symptoms and possibly keep more varicose veins from developing.


How to Adjust Your Diet for Varicose Vein Health


A woman’s hand holding a saltshaker


What to Avoid

You should avoid foods that are highly processed and contain lots of salt.

Salty foods and many highly processed foods cause the body to increase its volume of fluids. This places more pressure on varicose veins and impedes blood circulation.

Not getting enough fiber in your diet, causes constipation in your digestive system—a common contributor to the development of varicose veins.

Show your veins you love them by avoiding:

  • Sugar—contributes to weight gain
  • Processed meats—causes water retention
  • Salt—adds pressure to veins
  • Dairy—can cause constipation
  • Fried foods—clogs arteries and reduces blood flow

Here’s how drinking alcohol affects vein health.


What to Include in Your Diet

One key to having healthy veins is to make sure your diet supports good blood circulation.

Eating a diet rich in omega-3 fatty acids, antioxidants, and nutrients goes a long way to support vein health.

In dealing with diet and varicose veins, the good news is that vein-friendly foods are common and easy to find in your local grocery store.


Fruits and Vegetables

Most fruits and vegetables are great for your body and support good vein health.

Many fruits are chock full of antioxidants and anti-inflammatories. They also contain many nutrients that support vein health as well and keep blood vessels from leaking.


A pile of fresh oranges with some cut in half


Citrus fruits, including oranges and lemons, are bursting with vitamin C and help reduce swelling in varicose veins. Reduced swelling means much less pain in your legs after a long day of standing or sitting in one place.

Fruits also are high in fiber and reduce constipation.

Some fruits and vegetables to include in your diet for improved vein health are:

  • Avocados
  • Beets
  • Grapes
  • Kale
  • Berries
  • Black Olives
  • Ginger


Colorful beetroots on a white background



Foods with fiber help prevent constipation. Constipation promotes varicose vein development since it increases pressure on veins.

Fiber-rich foods also help keep cholesterol levels low and blood pressure at a healthy level.



Chopping onions may make your eyes tear, but they contain many nutrients that will make your body happy.

Onions contain Vitamin B6, zinc, fiber, and many nutrients that help your blood circulation.

Enjoy them in green salads and other healthful dishes.


Copper is an essential nutrient that promotes circulation and supports the body’s immune system.

If you don’t get enough copper, veins become less elastic. This makes the veins more likely to swell and gradually weaken.

There are many significant dietary sources of copper, including:

  • Beef liver
  • Almonds
  • Asparagus



Bioflavonoids are anti-inflammatories that do great things for your body and veins. They help treat osteoarthritis and other inflammatory conditions. Along with vein health, they also support blood circulation and heart health.

They will not only reduce vein swelling but help to strengthen vein walls.

Rutin is a naturally occurring bioflavonoid that protects blood vessels and has anti-inflammatory properties to protect against blood clots.

It’s found in apples and asparagus and many other fruits and vegetables.

Some additional sources of bioflavonoids include:

  • Dark chocolate
  • Grapes
  • Kidney beans


A bowl of cooked kidney beans with parsley and chopped scallions on top


Here’s more information on top foods for improved circulation and vein health.

You may also be interested in these additional diet tips for keeping veins healthy.


Additional Steps to Take for Vein Health


Drink Plenty of Water

Good hydration will help keep your circulatory system runny smoothly. It helps keep blood volume constant, flushes out waste from the system, and makes varicose veins feel better.

Water and fiber together work to keep bloating to a minimum and prevent constipation.


Physical Activity

A good tip for improved circulatory health and healthy veins is to have daily physical activity. This keeps the blood in your veins moving and helps keep veins healthy.

Of course, you never want to overdo it. Your doctor can recommend a good exercise program for you. Even walking every day will provide great benefits for your veins.


Do You Have Varicose Veins?

Varicose veins are those thick raised veins that people often see on their legs and feet. They can cause many physical symptoms, including pain, itchiness, and swelling.

Read more about varicose veins here.

If you have varicose veins, a screening can tell you how these veins are affecting your overall health. You can also learn about pain-free, proven treatments to eliminate your varicose veins.

Contact us at NJVVC for a free varicose vein screening.

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