These factors increase your risk of developing varicose veins:
Jan. 31, 2013
- Age. The risk of varicose veins increases with age. Aging causes wear and tear on the valves in your veins that help regulate blood flow. Eventually, that wear causes the valves to allow some blood to flow back into your veins where it collects instead of flowing up to your heart.
- Sex. Women are more likely to develop the condition. Hormonal changes during pregnancy, premenstruation or menopause may be a factor. Female hormones tend to relax vein walls. Taking hormone replacement therapy or birth control pills may increase your risk of varicose veins.
- Family history. If other family members had varicose veins, there's a greater chance you will too.
- Obesity. Being overweight puts added pressure on your veins.
- Standing or sitting for long periods of time. Your blood doesn't flow as well if you're in the same position for long periods.
- Varicose veins. National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute. http://www.nhlbi.nih.gov/health/health-topics/topics/vv/. Accessed Oct. 16, 2012.
- Varicose veins. The Merck Manuals: The Merck Manual for Healthcare Professionals. http://www.merckmanuals.com/professional/print/cardiovascular_disorders/peripheral_venous_disorders/varicose_veins.html. Accessed Oct. 16, 2012.
- Varicose veins and venous insufficiency. Society of Interventional Radiology. http://www.sirweb.org/patients/varicose-veins/. Accessed Oct. 16, 2012.
- Gloviczki P, et al. The care of patients with varicose veins and associated chronic venous diseases: Clinical practice guidelines of the Society for Vascular Surgery and the American Venous Forum. Journal of Vascular Surgery. 2011;53(suppl):2s.
- Murad MH, et al. A systematic review and meta-analysis of the treatments of varicose veins. Journal of Vascular Surgery. 2011;53(suppl):49S.
- Horse chestnut. Natural Medicines Comprehensive Database. http://www.naturaldatabase.com. Accessed Nov. 14, 2012.
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