Young Man With Concerns About Varicose Veins

February 5, 2017

“I’m a 23 year old male with no preexisting medical conditions to date. While I’m not 18 anymore, I still look at my body and am amazed at the fact that my legs and feet have changed so much given how young I am, relative to what seems the average age at which venous issues like mine present themselves and increase in scope.

 I have led a relatively sedentary life – was never very active. Up until now I have spent most of my life sitting (which to my mind is the most likely culprit for how early this issue has arisen). I was working in a law firm 2-3 days a week as a receptionist, else-wise sitting on public transport or sitting down to work on assignments or sitting down while grabbing lunch with friends.

Last year in February, I first noticed my veins. I was 22 then, and turned 23 in July. I had two scans last year (the first in August, the second in November.

 Around 2012/2013 when I was about 19/20, my Mother noticed small clusters of red patches on the inside and outside surfaces of my feet (spider veins) which were the precursor to what I have now, which is an extensive but reasonably early stage network of varicose, reticular and enlarged/pronounced (“dilated”) veins.

When I first started noticing newly prominent leg veins in February 2016, I noticed veins along the backs of my thighs and down my calves – some properly zigzaggy and ropey (confirmed varicosities), others that look to be on their way there, and others called ‘reticular’ veins as one vascular surgeon recently put it. All of these veins run from as high as the top of my thighs (all over the thighs and calves on each side) down to my heels and ankles.

I’m a very skinny guy with muscular calves so it’s a little hard to tell what vein are reticular and damaged – having become more prominent over this last year, given their association with those confirmed ‘varicose veins’ – and what veins are healthy, have always been there, and are just as  prominent as they ever were, but something that I notice now because I’m hyperconscious.

Over the last year I have definitely noticed more segments of particular veins presenting themselves. In my feet particularly. For example the superficial network of the dorsum on my foot (medial marginal veindorsal venous arch and lateral marginal vein) were prominent back in February 2016. However over the last year I noticed the superficial network of the anterior leg has become very prominent by the end of the day as well.

It is these feet veins which have really caused me worry, because the most recent vascular surgeon said that my venous insufficiency (if I can call it this) started from the ground up, a.k.a from the feet upwards.

I’m not really in pain. There is just discomfort, itching and throbbing because of backflow. I am predominantly worried about both a) this superficial network getting cosmetically worse and b) this network leading to further CVI related issues – hyper-pigmentation, rashes, swelling, clotting etc.

While I know that cosmetic concerns might seem trite, the anguish and distress that I routinely have from seeing my body change (and in my mind degrade) over the last year has been pretty mind-altering in its depth/severity.

I’m not sure if you can help, but I’m just grateful that there are people like you two who are willing to hear my concerns and provide empathy. Empathy that the phlebologists and vascular surgeons I’ve seen so far, have not extended to me because my case is so recent as to be of little immediate concern.

Finally, if you’d like I can send you copies of the scans as well as photos if need be.

Again thank you for your time!