About 40% of women develop varicose veins during pregnancy, especially during their second or third trimester.
These enlarged and twisted veins can itch, hurt and cause a feeling of heaviness while appearing unsightly on the lower legs.
For many, varicose veins are generally harmless and often resolve on their own after childbirth.
For others, advanced treatment may be required to remove them and restore overall vein quality after pregnancy.
Varicose veins are caused when increased pressure damages or weakens the vein. When veins stop working effectively, blood can flow backward and pool, causing them to swell and appear bulging and twisted just below the skin’s surface.
If you’re living with varicose veins caused by pregnancy, we can help.
Let’s discuss varicose vein causes and whether or not they go away after pregnancy.
What Causes Varicose Veins During Pregnancy?
Pregnancy is often considered a new chapter in a woman’s life. Still, it can come with many unexpected health changes that increase the risk of developing conditions such as varicose veins.
There are various reasons you may develop varicose veins during pregnancy, including:
● Increased Blood Volume
Throughout pregnancy, blood volume increases as much as 50% to help supply enough oxygen to your body to meet the growing demands of your baby. Increased blood volume can add pressure to your veins, making them more likely to cause weakened valves and blood pooling.
● Increased Hormone Levels
High progesterone levels are necessary to maintain a healthy pregnancy, but they can also weaken vein valves and relax veins. Hormonal changes can significantly impact your vein health and increase the likelihood of varicose veins due to excess fluid retention, especially in the legs and feet.
● Weight Gain
Some weight gain is expected and necessary during pregnancy. However, an increase in weight can put excess stress on your vein’s valves, increasing your risk of developing varicose veins.
The short answer is that it depends.
Some women see a reduction in the appearance of varicose veins beginning 6 to 12 weeks postpartum. Although their symptoms may reduce or disappear over time, it is essential to work with your doctor or a vein specialist to take a deeper look at your vein health both during and after pregnancy.
If your varicose veins are bothersome post-pregnancy, minimally invasive treatment options may be the option for your vein health.
In most cases, vein surgery is not recommended during pregnancy.
However, our team can help you reduce the signs and symptoms of varicose veins and prevent complications during pregnancy.
If pregnancy has caused you to develop varicose veins, or you are experiencing symptoms consistent with this condition, we are here to help.
It is important to note that general recommendations say pregnant women should wait until after the birth of their baby to undergo treatment for varicose veins.
However, our skilled team is always available to discuss your vein health needs throughout your pregnancy journey to help mitigate symptoms and help you decide on a comprehensive postpartum treatment plan.
Our vein care specialists are experts in the most advanced vein care procedures and technologies, including varicose vein treatment. Call 336-536-6522 to schedule an appointment today.