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Can my varicose veins burst?

My veins look twisted and jumbled up. Do varicose veins burst under any specific conditions?

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Doctors Answers (7)

It is possible that they could burst and start bleeding. If that happens, apply pressure with gauze for at least five minutes and then wrap the area with gauze. It is better to have them treated before you have this problem happen. You will need an ultrasound to evaluate the extent of your vein disease. Then we will create a treatment plan for your condition.

Varicose veins can burst if the overlying skin is very thin due to advanced venous insufficiency or due to direct trauma.

Varicose veins enlarge like a balloon being inflated with a rising to the skin surface, increasing venous pressure and thinning walls eventually lead to a rupture of the vein, usually near the ankle and often at the end of the day when the vein is the most congested. When it bursts the flow will initially be high pressure but as the vein drains the pressure and blood flow will rapidly slow down. This may be painless and can happen while standing, sitting or in bed. Spontaneous bleeding of varicose veins is reason to have them evaluated and treated.

Yes, you could have a spontaneous bleed from a varicose vein or a spider vein. This most commonly happens if the vein walls and overlying skin become very thin and there is a lot of gravity pressure. Veins typically have valves which keep the blood flowing up. In varicose and saphenous veins, these valves are damaged if you have the inherited predisposition. The most commonly seen time is in the shower, your body is warm, the veins become dilated and can rupture. The main thing to remember is this is a low pressure system. You need to apply local pressure, lay down with your leg above your heart and stay like that. If someone can bring you an icepack it is helpful. These will seal on their own and don't warrant a trip to the ER. You do not need a tourniquet as this is not an artery. Just firm local pressure, a clump of cotton balls and firm tape will be sufficient. You should be evaluated as to why you have varicose veins or underlying insufficiency of saphenous veins. If you are symptomatic or have these bleeds, you should be eligible for insurance coverage.

Yes, they can rupture and cause a large hematoma under the skin. This can be quite painful. I recommend you have these evaluated and treated appropriately. Most insurances will cover the treatment of symptomatic varicose veins.

They can "burst", but usually after minor trauma like shaving. Large varicosities should be evaluated by a vein specialist.

Varicose veins burst can "burst" when they are cut or pierced which cause them to bleed. It happens from time to time.

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