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Are Venous Reflux Disease and Varicose Veins the Same?

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  • | 12:00 a.m. January 19, 2023
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In the U.S., more than 40 million Americans suffer from varicose veins, or the more serious form of vein disease, chronic venous insufficiency. It can affect up to 40 percent of adults and goes largely undiagnosed and untreated.

Varicose veins are more common in those who are overweight and in women who have had multiple pregnancies. The disease is three times more frequent in women, however, 25 percent of men will also develop the disease during their lifetime.


Healthy leg veins have valves that keep blood flowing to the heart. Venous reflux disease develops when the valves stop working properly and allow blood to flow backward (i.e., reflux) and pool in the lower leg veins. If venous reflux disease is left untreated, symptoms will worsen over time. As a result, vein valves will not close properly, leading to signs and symptoms such as:

  • Varicose Veins
  • Aching 
  • Swelling
  • Cramping
  • Heaviness or Tiredness
  • Itching  
  • Restlessness
  • Discoloration
  • Open Ulcers


Women are more likely to have varicose veins than men. If you are a smoker, there is a greater chance it causes damage to your blood vessels, increasing your chances of vein disease. If you have a history of blood clots, this can result in higher risk for developing varicose and spider veins.


For a small number of patients, conservative treatment alone (compression stockings) may improve blood flow. For other patients, closing the diseased vein may be necessary to improve blood flow. Closing the diseased vein directs blood to nearby healthy veins and can be achieved with VenaSeal®, Varithena® microfoam, radiofrequency ablations, and/or ultrasound-guided sclerotherapy. You don’t have to suffer from the pain and discomfort of venous reflux disease. Florida Lakes Vein Center offers state-of-the-art, minimally invasive treatments with no downtime. It’s a No Veiner!SM

Think you may have vein disease? Call us to schedule a FREE VEIN SCREENING & mention the Observer. 941.866.8989

Florida Lakes Vein Center offers appointments in Lakewood Ranch Tuesdays - Thursdays 8 a.m.-5 p.m. & Fridays 8 a.m.-3 p.m.


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