Varicose Veins & Spider Veins

Parent Q&A

Select any title to view the full question and replies.

  • Varicose Vein Stripping

    (1 reply)

    Looking for personal experiences from anyone who has had major vein stripping done. I've been told it's major surgery and so am nervous. Have extreme pain in both my legs and it is affecting the quality of life. I had laser removal done a few years back, but the benefits only lasted a year. Now my legs ache all the time and I am desperate for some relief. I wear compression stockings 24/7. I was told that with vein stripping the surgeon will make about fifty incisions down each leg and remove the veins. The surgery is painful and the recovery is long. Anyone who has had this done, was it worth the surgery and recovery? How many years have you remained pain free? Thanks.

    Are you sure you need full vein stripping? Just wondering if you've fully explored (or gotten a 2nd opinion) about sclerotherapy for varicose veins. Much less invasive and shorter recovery, but if your VVs are severe, you may not be a candidate...? Just thought to mention sclerotherapy. Good luck!

  • Severe Varicose Veins and Air Travel

    (3 replies)

    I am looking at an 11 hour flight to visit my ailing mother. I have severe varicose veins and have to wear compression stockings round the clock and even sleep with my legs elevated. Last time I flew, my legs swelled up a lot and resulted in severe prolonged pain. I have never flown first class and am wondering if that might help. Would I be able to elevate my legs? Also, I'm wondering if that would be a safer option perhaps offering some protection from covid-19?

    Thank you for any input and/or ideas.

    tl; dr: I definitely think that a pod-like lay-flat seat would help with both giving you extra space in the name of COVID protection and also with your varicose veins. You didn't say where you need to travel to but there are many different iterations of first/business class seats so please be careful when selecting your airline and your seat! Always consult seatguru as you book or call the airline to confirm if they don't have a picture. Also, double check a week before your trip to make sure there hasn't been an aircraft swap.

    The lay flat seats (that turn into a bed) - are the ones you often see from SFO to Asia and Europe and to major hubs on the east coast. The big airlines all have their versions of them but the nicest one is JetBlue Mint. With a few exceptions, like Singapore Airlines and some versions of Air France, you can expect these seats in *both* business class and first class (you do not necessarily need to spend the extra money to buy a "first class" seat when business class will suffice). You can still sit up but also easily elevate your legs with your footrest. When it's time to sleep, you can also figure out how to "cradle yourself" so that your legs are elevated. You may not be completely flat (like a bed) if you need your legs elevated but it will be worlds more comfortable than an economy seat. 

    FYI: A regular domestic first class-type seat that reclines but doesn't go flat wouldn't be as effective as many of them do not even have a foot rest so I would not spend my money on those seats. You're better off getting an economy seat with extra space and putting a suitcase underneath the seat in front you to prop your legs up on. Safe travels!

    Yes check if that flight has a flat bed. It makes a huge difference! For Covid risk take wipes to clean the bathroom before abs after use. That is the biggest risk as planes have hepa filters so the air is clean. 

    One suggestion I have for the swelling is to get into a pool as soon as possible after you arrive. The pressure of the water helps your body return to "normal." I always do this in both directions when I fly, and I try to get into deep water every other day, especially when I'm traveling. I haven't tried flying first class. Train travel (sleeper car) was much better than flying but I'm assuming that you don't have the time for that.

  • Painful Varicose Veins

    (3 replies)

    I have very painful varicose veins.

    Can anyone share their experience of utilizing acupuncture to treat the condition?

    Did it work at alleviating pain?

    If so, how long did it take for pain to be drastically decreased?

    Thanks in advance for sharing your experience!

    Have not tried acupuncture but swear by this liquid tumeric! It is truly a miracle cure.

    My pain has vanished, and I was looking at having vein stripping done because both my legs were so bad. I could literally not function. Please try this. Good luck!

    I did not try acupuncture specifically for the veins, although I did have it done for the overall pain I had experienced in my leg, and it didn't do much for me.  I believe my friend who is an acupuncturist said something about bleeding varicose veins, but I can't be certain.  I had to get mine stripped and ablated.  Did it just before Thanksgiving of last year.  The truth is that I didn't realize it was the veins that were causing pain because I'd had them for 28 years and also have a bad hip and the two issues overlapped.

    The procedure was pretty mellow.  Local anesthesia, in and out pretty fast, wear a compression legging for a few weeks.  I'm happy with the results.  My leg looks so much better.  Only pin sized scars you have to really work to see.  95% of the pain has resolved, so much that I no longer take anything to help with the pain.  Only complaint is that my inner thigh from my groin to my knee, where the MD did the ablation, is still numb gets a little achey now and again, and it may be that way permanently.  Thankfully it doesn't really hurt that bad unless I put pressure on the area.  So, if acupuncture doesn't work, I recommend at least looking into the procedure.  It was worth it for me.  

    I have not tried acupuncture but I have had great success using Castor Seed Oil. I mix it with Shea Butter and apply to the areas of my leg that were in pain. The pain went significantly down overnight! Good Luck!

  • I am much too young to never again wear a swimsuit, but with these unsightly veins in my legs that may be the case. Can anyone here recommend a vein specialist who can treat varicose and spider veins? Or at the very least have information to impart regarding treatment options, cost, etc? I understand that insurance will not cover this treatment, so I am willing to pay out of pocket (well, I suppose, depending on the cost).

    Have you talked to your doctor and are you sure your varicose veins aren't covered?  Mine were.  Spider veins were not.  

    Michael D. Ingegno, M.D.13851 East 14th Street Suite 202 San Leandro, CA 94578

    I think he has two other offices in Alameda  and San Ramon as well  

    My MIL gets hers taken care of regularly and (I believe) she's gone to the same person for decades now. Call me if you like and I can put you two in touch.



Archived Q&A and Reviews


Surgeon to treat lumpy and painful varicose veins

Jan 2008

I am looking for a vascular surgeon to treat my lumpy and painful varicose veins. Any recommendations or advice/experience? Thank you! -No skirts for me

I have seen Dr.John Bry for few years. I have terrible varicose veins and never felt comfortable in shorts or skirts. He's managed to treat even my big veins w/injections. New veins will come up so I've had to go back a couple of times. His number is 832-6131. He's in Oakland over by Summit Hospital. anon