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Varicose veins are not only a cosmetic concern. They’re a health issue that affects millions of people worldwide.

These twisted, enlarged veins, most commonly appearing in the legs and feet, can cause discomfort, pain, and swelling — and understanding the reasons behind the swelling that comes with varicose veins is crucial for effectively addressing this condition.

We’re vein experts in the Milwaukee, Wisconsin area. In this article, we’ll explore why varicose veins cause swelling, provide practical solutions to alleviate your symptoms and improve your overall vascular health, and show how you can stop varicose vein swelling for good.

The Connection Between Varicose Veins and Swelling

Varicose veins happen when your veins become enlarged, dilated, and overfilled with blood. This condition is most often caused by weakened or damaged vein walls and valves.

In a healthy vein, valves open and close to allow blood to flow toward the heart. However, when these valves are weakened or damaged, blood can flow backward and start pooling in the vein, causing it to become varicose.

The swelling that comes with varicose veins happens when blood builds up in these weakened veins. The resultant pooling increases pressure inside the veins, which can lead to fluid leaking into the surrounding tissues, which, in turn, causes swelling or edema.

The legs and feet are the most common parts of your body where swelling happens, as standing and walking upright increases the pressure in the veins of your lower body.

Apart from swelling, varicose veins can also lead to symptoms such as aching, pain, or discomfort in the affected area, a sensation of heaviness or fatigue in the legs, itching around the vein, and, in severe cases, skin discoloration or ulcers.

It’s important to note that swelling in the legs can be a sign of other health problems as well, with the most common ones being:

  • Cardiovascular Conditions
  • Kidney Problems
  • Lymphatic System Disorders
  • Reaction to Medications
  • Joint Diseases
  • Excess Weight
  • Lung Hypertension
  • Liver Conditions

If you notice sudden and severe swelling that isn’t going away and appears to be happening for no reason, please seek immediate medical help, as this swelling can lead to serious health complications. 

At-Home Treatments for Swelling

Some lifestyle changes can significantly improve symptoms of swelling. 

For example, physical activity, especially walking, can help improve blood circulation in the legs and reduce the pressure in your veins.

You can also try elevating your legs above your heart level for 15 to 20 minutes several times a day. This can help reduce the swelling by aiding blood flow back to your heart.

Compression stockings are another popular method for relieving swelling in the legs. These special stockings apply gentle pressure to your legs, helping veins and leg muscles move blood more efficiently.

As excess weight is a common factor with varicose veins, maintaining a healthy weight is super important. Excess weight puts even more pressure on your veins, so regulating your weight can reduce the strain on your circulatory system.

Additionally, if you can manage, try to avoid long periods of standing or sitting still. If possible, move around at least every 30 minutes to improve blood flow and prevent blood from pooling in your veins.

How to Eliminate Swelling Caused by Varicose Veins

The most successful way to eliminate varicose veins and the swelling for good is through varicose vein treatment.. 

At our clinic in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, we’ve found that interventions such as venous ablation or sclerotherapy are reliable treatments that can relieve symptoms and prevent future development or progression of the disease.

Vein ablations are a minimally invasive procedure for varicose veins. During vein ablation, we seal the varicose veins with a laser or high-frequency radio waves. This restores healthy blood flow to the body and eliminates undesirable symptoms like swelling. 

Sclerotherapy is another popular way to treat varicose and spider veins on the legs. Just like vein ablations, it’s minimally invasive, meaning you can return to your normal activities soon after treatment. It works by injecting a special solution into the vein, which makes the vein close up and, in a few weeks, fade away completely.


Varicose veins can lead to uncomfortable swelling, but with the right approach, it’s possible to not only manage the symptoms and improve your vascular health but eliminate the disease for good – in a very minimally invasive way.

We’d like to stress again that swelling in the legs can happen for various other reasons, so please contact your medical provider if you notice sudden changes that aren’t going away. 

Here at our clinic in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, we’ve helped thousands of patients live a pain-free life through effective treatment. If you’re concerned about varicose veins or the swelling they cause, contact us. We are ready to help you find the best treatment options for your specific needs.