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Can the severity of varicose veins be different throughout the body?

This question was asked in Odessa, New York and has 4 answer(s) as of 08/05/2014.
I work a thirteen hour shift at work and have varicose veins on both my legs. I experience pain in my lower calf after working, but this pain only occurs on my left leg. Could this pain be due to the varicose veins? Why would I only experience pain on one leg if I have varicose veins on both? Can the severity of varicose veins be different throughout the body?


Doctors Answers (4)

Varicose veins can vary greatly by location and we often see a varicose veins on only one leg, or a patient may also have symptoms only in one segment of the varicose vein. In general, the more severe the varicose veins become, the more likely they produce symptoms including pain. If your pain comes directly from a visible varicose vein and the vein may also be tender to the touch, then treating the varicose vein would be the next step. Pain in the legs can also be caused by muscular and connective tissues as well as from other causes. Diagnosing the cause of your leg pain, if it is unclear, may require a physical exam by your physician.

Varicose veins are more common on the left lower extremity than the right. Soft tissue swelling, pain, and tenderness of the lower extremity often are due to venous insufficiency (failure of the one-way valves in the veins), and varicose veins develop due to the high pressure in the veins. A much smaller number of patients, mostly women, will have left lower extremity pain or swelling due to compression of the iliac vein in the pelvis causing pressure to build up in the veins of the leg.

You need to have a duplex ultrasound scan of your legs. Correction is usually covered by insurance if you are symptomatic.

The severity of the veins may be different in your two legs. It is best to see a physician and have an ultrasound to see which veins are involved and have venous insufficiency, and how they are contributing to your problem.

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