Varicose Veins Specialist

Heart and Vascular of Central Texas

Henry Lucid, MD

Cardiologist located in Cedar Park, TX & Round Rock, TX

When large purple or blue veins start appearing on your legs, it's not just a cosmetic issue. Varicose veins can be a sign of problems with your circulation, so if you notice these unsightly blood vessels, visit fellowship-trained cardiologist Henry Lucid, MD, at Heart and Vascular of Central Texas. At locations in Cedar Park, Round Rock, and Georgetown, Texas, Dr. Lucid and his team can assess your varicose veins and recommend the appropriate treatment. Call the office closest to you or schedule a consultation by using the online booking tool today.

Varicose Veins Q & A

What are varicose veins?

Varicose veins are a cosmetic issue that can also be a sign of underlying problems with your circulation.

The veins concerned are prominent and often a blue, purple, or red color. They look like coiled ropes bulging out from your legs and can cause discomfort as they get larger. If you have varicose veins, additional symptoms you might experience include:

  • Itching and tingling
  • Heaviness and fatigue
  • Burning or throbbing
  • Leg pain and soreness
  • Restless legs
  • Leg swelling
  • Skin discoloration

As the veins get larger and spread, they can trigger serious problems like venous ulcers — open, nonhealing wounds on your legs and ankles.

What causes varicose veins?

Varicose veins typically develop when the valves inside your veins stop performing the job they're supposed to — stopping blood from flowing down your leg.

Arteries carry blood to your legs, and veins return it to your heart. Because the blood has to travel up from your feet, the veins have valves in them to keep your blood flowing the right way.

When the valves aren't working, blood trickles down and forms pools that show up as varicose veins. This condition, called chronic venous insufficiency, can arise because of factors such as:

  • Genetics
  • Being on your feet for long periods
  • Getting too little exercise
  • Increasing age
  • Being overweight or obese

Women develop varicose veins more readily than men, and these problem veins often appear during pregnancy.

How are varicose veins treated?

There are several ways of dealing with problem varicose veins, including:

Endovenous laser therapy

This minimally invasive procedure uses heat from light energy to close off the diseased vein.

Endovenous radiofrequency ablation

Another minimally invasive procedure, but it uses radio wave energy as a heat source instead of laser light.

Sclerotherapy

Sclerotherapy is an injectable treatment that uses a liquid or foam to close the vein.

Ambulatory phlebectomy

Phlebectomy involves surgically removing the damaged veins using tiny incisions at the top and bottom of the vein. It's a minimally invasive alternative to vein stripping, which used to be the main treatment method for varicose veins.

There are also innovative options like medical adhesive to seal the vein shut. Treated veins gradually wither and disappear, and blood just follows an alternate route along another vein.

Heart and Vascular of Central Texas doesn't perform vein surgery, focusing mainly on diagnosis. They do refer patients to vascular surgeons where necessary.

For expert assessment of your varicose veins, call Heart and Vascular of Central Texas today or book an appointment online.