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  • Varicose veins (Photo from Wellcome Trust)

    Varicose Veins

    Twisted, lumpy, dark blue veins that form under the skin on the legs. More common with age, they're harmless, but can be unsightly and embarrassing. Read more →

    My boyfriend has very bad legs with prominent veins and gradually the whole skin around his legs has become dark. I see videos on this website which make me think that this is a pigmentation problem. This is probably why the doctor told him it was nothing. However he does not explain and his varicose legs sometimes are very itchy and there was a burst of 1 vein once and another one seem to burst soon. I have seen his legs deteriorating over the 5 years of our relationship. I just wonder how can someone help so that he feels less heavy on his legs, now in Winter or Summer he suffers on both legs. Doctors do not explain just say this is varicose veins and NHS treatment is only foam treatment which is not suitable for his veins. If you have suggestions on how to help him suffering less, on assessing if this is really pigmentation or not on his skin and how to prevent the itch and the pain when he is at work(he is forklift driver day time and caretaker at a sportscenter evenings and weekends), that would be useful. Kind regards Catherine





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    Hi there I am 22 years old and have big veins running through both of my legs. Due to my job I stand all day long very briefly being able to sit down. Both my legs swell up quite big, they get very sore and very tender to touch. In the evenings my legs get very twitchy and almost feel like pins and needles and trickling sensation. Over the past few months the veins have got a lot bigger and spread out more. They also feel very heavy. I have been to see my gp I have tried tight socks but they made the veins stick out more. I drink plenty of water and regularly go to gym and have a dog so I do go walking a lot. I have even been told by a gp to use ibuleve gel which I even said wouldn't work! Is there anything I can do? I never was bothered about the look of them but they are getting bigger and more painful now.





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    Hi I've always had broken veins all over my legs and also I have very veiny boobs and arms :( is there not anything you can do about this? I know there are treatments for broken veins but what about these deep blue veins on my boobs and top of my arms! I'm so self conscious about it.





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    Lauren, have a chat to specialists in this field.. Start with a Doctor see why it is the way it is and not a condition elsewhere.. Blood flow ect.... Then ask him about specialist that deal with this cosmetically once you know medically you are ok...Also, try using Pharmacies for advice for cover ups creams.. I use a non greasy bronzer on my legs as I have spiders all over one leg..and that works a treat for me, so much so I am contented with that level pro activeness..

    is it safe to tattoo over spider veins on your legs. I have loads at the top of my thigh and i have tried the sclyrotheropy treatment but its too expensive. can the tattoo cause any further harm/damage to the veins?





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    I AM 26 YEARS OLD AND MY FEET ARE PURPLE DUE TO THREAD VEINS I HAVE VERY BAD VEINS IN MY LEGS AND WOULD LIKE TO UNDERGO TREATEMENT BUT I HAVE HEARD ITS VERY EXPENSIVE. I WOULD LIKE TO KNOW WHERE I COULD GO IN BIRMINGHAM TO UNDERGO MICRO INJECTIONS SCHERLOTHERAPY AND HOW MUCH APPROXIMATELY A COURSE OF TREATMENT WOULD COST.





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    Dear Lucy, I have the same problem very fine network of thread veins on the top of my feet from the ankle to the toes, I am desperate to get rid of them. did you have any luck with yours ? Can you advise me?

    hi I am 19 and have got to children. I had a caesarean with with last child since ive had him ive had so many problems including bulging varicose veins on the back of my legs. I am so self concious about myself so not on are the varicose veins a physical pain they are also an emotional pain. is there anything that can be done to reduce or get rid of them, please help. thanks.





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    Can protruding veins on forehead be treatable? My problem is when i smile, i have two bulging veins that sticks out from my forehead, looks horrible and its really getting me down. ALways need to cover with a fringe, can never pin it all back due to the veins as people will notice and stare. I would say these are close to varicose veins and desperately want to get them treated as ive lived with this for a number of years. Never noticed them when i was young, and now im 32 its probably due to exercising over the years that caused it to rise to the surface of my skin. Really need some advice, so please help if you can. Thank you.





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    i have pain in the veins in the top of my legs.





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    I have thread veins on my legs and want to know, a) what causes them and b) is the cause a matter of concern?





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    hi sclereotherapy will get rid of them for you , ive had the treatment but i had to pay private as its not available on the nhs anymore,

    I'm 31 got spider veins on my legs getting quite depressed about them is there anything I can do to get rid of them and prevent more? Please!





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Show more…

    I had my first varicose vein around ten, i had it removed when i was 19. Since then the came back with vengence in both legs and i had an operation to strip both legs last june [I am 33]. The doctor forgot one of the veins, I had 3 infections and even now my scars are still dark pink and prominent. I have new veins coming up, and even after all that I went through I would still have it done again as I just want to be able to wear skirts or dresses like a lad should [I have never been able to due to embarassment]. I have broken veins all over my legs, and more just keep appearing all the time. I have the legs of an old lady. I also constantly get restless legs [dont know if this is anything to do with this or not].





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    hi im 38 and suffer from both spider veins and varicose veins on both legs . i had loads of varicose veins remove in my early twentys. i would love to be able to wear a skirt but not able to with the amount i have also my legs swell up alot as the day go on.where would i be able to get the spider veins removed please.





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    I'm 49 and I have spider veins on my legs. Also on the back of my left leg the veins are very dark and appear to be almost at the surface of the skin. Are these varicose veins? They are not thick nor hurt. Can something been done for these veins and also for the spider veins?





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    I have just recently had my varicose veins stripped from both legs about 8 weeks ago after having them since about 9, i have had one taken out under local anaesthetic when I was 19. I can honestly say yes the majority of the bulging veins are gone, although it hasnt got rid of all of them, i have had 3 infections, have a lot of scars both large and small, these scars are still red and angry. Both thighs are in constant pain, my legs are constantly aching, and i still have lot of discolouration from spider veins - I am only 33 and feel like i have the legs of an old woman. i wanted the operation because they itched and ached all the time and the obvious embarrassment of getting my legs out in public - well I still cant get my legs out - I suppose as the saying goes 'Things can only get better'. i would think carefully if thinking about having it done - although there are other ways of doing it now other than stripping. If i could have one wish it would be to have perfect pins :)





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    I'm 22 have varicose veins on both my legs and recently have started getting pain in my legs.I cannot wear shorts during the summer especially when it is hot and stopped play football and basket ball as it embarrassing to wear short and my legs are showing all this veins any help please.





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    I purchased a special offer of three sessions of veinwave. The therapist did all over my upper legs for the three sessions which included very faint veins (to get the three sessions all done). Unfortunately the treatment made my veins more promenant and my legs now look much worse. I am very upset and my partner and friends agree my legs (which were not that bad) now look worse. The treatment was quite painful and the probe was quite hot. The scabs stayed on my skin for over two weeks and the veins under the scabs looked worse and now four months after my treatment my legs are much worse. I would not recommend this treatment at all.





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    i had veinwave on my face. i now have been left with horrfic scars, i was never warned that i could be left with scarrin. i now recieving conselling, on anti depressants, i do not want to live looking like this. channel 4 should be warning people of this treatment not promoting it!IT RUINS LIVES!

    my mum has blue and purply veins on her feet and lower legs. she says her grandad had them. also they sometimes ach and are very lumpy. they are little veins coming through. on the legs they are a bit bigger. is there any thing she can do about it.





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    I suffer from varicose veins and at times they ache and my legs swell up I have been to the hospital and they say there not deep vein but surface veins..my doctors wont agree to me having an operation because they say its cosmetic ad I don't have the money to go private so is there anything to stop my legs acheing...theres times I don't know what to do with myself because my legs feel uncomfortable





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    2 months ago, I woke up to find green lines covering my legs as if someone had drawn on me with a felt tip. I went to my GP and was diagnosed with early onset varicose veins covering both of my legs and I'm only 27! She said it was nothing to worry about and a natural part of the ageing process! I've bought support stockings from M&S which I wear everyday at work (I'm a teacher), I've started walking everyday and elevating my legs when I get home yet 3 of the veins have now developed small lumps - which I'm told are the broken valves of the veins - and my calf is now blue with all the veins appearing all within weeks. After repeated trips to the docs I'm told it's just one of those things! I'm worried about the quick speed these veins seem to be developing and as I haven't had children yet, how bad they will get during future pregnancies not to mention as I get older. At 27, it seems a long time to have to suffer with these without any support from the NHS.





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    Im 17 and have varicose veins on my legs which are very lumpy, blue and getting very large, with spider veins starting to appear also. I feel very insecure about them and i dont wear skirts, shorts or dresses which shows my legs, and for a 17 year old girl, this is a pain, especially as it's coming to summer. They itch so much, especially sometimes at work as Im a waitress so constantly on my feet. They seem to make my legs hurt and ache in the mornings sometimes when i get up. No one really understands how self conscious I feel about my legs, and it gets my down a lot. I looked into having surgery and had a scan, but they said I couldn't have it on the NHS and so would have to pay £800 for the cheapest option which would be having needles put in the backs of my legs... but im needlephobic and really can't afford £800.. You really can't win!.





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    I know how you feel, I am also 17 and have the 'spider veins' starting to show up on my legs, I have no idea what caused them or what started them but they are appearing in little batches. I dont want it to get worse as I love wearing short skirts. what do i do?

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    hi I've had 6 pregnacies and since my 4th my legs and ankles have swollen so bad its un bearable to walk or even stand my veins in my legs are blue and my doctor has said I've varicose veins and they just said have blood test and nothings come up and I've also been told ive got to get use to the fact I'm fat and I've big legs please please I need so help I can't walk for long or run so exercise is out of question apart from swimming which is good but I've got a busy schedule with school runs and house work I need help or advice





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    hi, i have had varicose veins since i was 19. i have them in both legs and when my daughter aged 5 (now13) asked me why i had worms in my legs it was the worst day in my life as that comment has never gone away and my veins are even bigger now. i suffer with excema allover which is even worse on my legs. i havent worn a skirt without tights for over 8years and i struggle with any form of exercise other than walking or working as the added pressure to my veins makes my legs swell and they get as hot as a furnace. the doctors have referred me to no avail and have even told me i can be signed off work indefinately. i am slightly obese(size 18) but due to not being able to exercise without making the symptoms worse i am in a catch 22 situation and while i cannot offer you any guidance or help it makes me feel a bit more comfortable knowing that i am not the only one out there who struggles with this. regards caroline

    I have itchy legs with what appear to be thread veins and in some places varicose veins though not sure as not painful as yet. However my skin in general is itchy and worse in the areas at the site of thread veins. I have tried using aquaous cream I got for eczema on my arms but it does little to help. Shaving my legs make itching worse. It is driving me crazy, had to give swimming a rest which is annoying as it help my arthritis and is why I went to the expense of paying for private gym as the pool is warmer than council. Thanks





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    Hi I watched the programme last night re the thread veins, I couldnt believe it when I saw that consultant make the ladies veins disappear. I feel the same way about my legs. I hate them all I can see is veins on my ankles, knees and thighs. I look like I am 70 not 40. Did anyone get the name of the consultant as I would like to see him to see what he can do for me.





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    I have suffered from ugly and unsightly varicose veins in both legs since the age of 11. I underwent surgery in both legs when I was 21 and 22. I am now 27 and more veins have appeared in both legs which leaves them feeling achy, heavy and increadably itchy. I dont know what to do anymore and my confidence is so low. I am hesitant to undergo further surgery as I still have the scars from the previous surgeries. I really want to get rid of them so that I can wear skirts and shorts in the summer but I dont know what other options I have left. Please please help.





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    I keep seeing all these posts where the writer has had their veins stripped or treated in some way. I go swimming every week and suffer huge embarrassment every time. I have never seen anybody at the pool with veins that bulge, let alone with veins as bad as my own. I went to the doctor and showed her the veins where they go all the way up my legs and ACROSS my thigh, under my buttock and over - they all bulge, they are all twisted and they are all very obvious - my doctor said I would not get them treated by the NHS because they are not bad enough! How do other people get them treated???? Please help.





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    Hi, I have thread veins on both legs (top and bottom)- I have tried laser treatment at a beauty salon but it did not touch the veins. They are really unsightly and they feel bruised. They look like April's do in the video. My doctors say there is nothing that can be done. I feel really embarrassed and self-conscious of my legs, especially when I put my swimming costume on - on holiday or just taking the children swimming. I am in my 30's and I have had really old and unsightly looking legs for at least 15 years. Any advice would be great.





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    Hi there, I hope someone can help me. I'm 16 years old. I believe I'm a healthy weight if 8st I go to the gym 3 times a week. However over the past month I have had purple/red veins splitting every where on the front of my thighs. Not just a couple I have like 35 sections on my legs that have spilt into like tree branches. Also on the back on my thighs and back on my calves I have blue veins and some of them are knotted. There sore and throb at times. I'm young and all I seem to be doing is getting upset and annoying everyone as I don't stop moaning about these. I'm getting so depressed as I don't feel confident having my legs out anymore. Please help is there anything I can do. I've been to do the doctors and they're said they can't Give me anything as NHS believe varicous and spider veins are to do with cosmetic use which I feel is ridicilous. This is ruining me. There are contiously spreading on my legs. Now my arms and boobs. Please help me! :(





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    I'm 33, and nearly the same thing has been happening to me, too. I'm at a low weight and was working out 5-6 days a week. No varicose veins a month ago, and now I have at least a dozen varicose veins throughout both of my legs (calves and thighs), and multiple spider vein patches, too. I don't know what's going on and am very depressed about it! I'm scheduled to see a vein specialist next week. I wonder if overexercising started all of this.

    Hi, I really need your help! I have VERY unsightly varicose veins on both my legs with a particularly bad area on the front of my right leg. I get pain in my leg and sometimes pins and needles and numbness in my foot. I am 33 with two beautiful children but I am always feeling down with my legs. I cover up and never wear skirts or anything that may show my veins. I so desperately want to have my legs out on show and wear all the sexy summer dresses that are about instead of frumpy clothes. Please please help me, I just want to have confidence in myself and not have the pain and discomfort. Thank you





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    i know how you feel!i am a 38 yr old woman with unsightly thread veins from my ankle to my bum!i have been to the doctors 3 times,but they send you away and say there is nothing they can do!!!!!It actually depresses me and i think about it every day.My marraige is suffering because i don't even want to be naked infront of my husband(of 10 yrs)as i'm so embarassed of my legs!i find myself looking at every woman's legs in the summer and thinking,why me!!!???why not them??what did i do to deserve these horrible disgusting legs!!!I HATE SUMMER!!!The way i see it is that women are supposed to have great boobs,lovely bum or fantaastic legs!!!if yr lucky, you have all 3.As far as i'm concerned i have none of them,i don't feel like a woman at all!!If anyone knows of a good cream for veins,please let me know.xxxxx

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