63 doctors weighed in:
Why am I getting varicose veins while pregnant?
63 doctors weighed in

Dr. Padmavati Garvey
Obstetrics & Gynecology
28 doctors agree
In brief: Pressure on veins
As the baby and uterus start to grow they exert pressure over the pelvic and leg veins.
This pressure can lead to varicose veins in some women. Depending on the patient the varicosities may or may not go away after delivery.

In brief: Pressure on veins
As the baby and uterus start to grow they exert pressure over the pelvic and leg veins.
This pressure can lead to varicose veins in some women. Depending on the patient the varicosities may or may not go away after delivery.
Dr. Padmavati Garvey
Dr. Padmavati Garvey
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2 comments
Dr. Ted King
Unfortunately, the varicose veins that appear during pregnancy generally don't ever go away. They get much smaller after delivery and often shrink so much that they are no longer readily apparent but the damage is done and many of these veins will ultimately cause further trouble in the future.
Dr. James White
Early treatment with medical grade compression pantyhose can support and greatly reduce the varicose veins. Compression therapy reduces the superficial vein pressure helping to prevent dilation of the veins. Proper fit and different sizes will be need during the entire pregnancy.
Dr. Steven Zimmet
Aesthetic Medicine
15 doctors agree
In brief: Veins in Pregnancy
Varicose veins often develop during pregnancy.
The key causes are high Progesterone levels which cause the vein walls to dilate/relax, increased blood volume, and pressure on veins from the enlarging uterus. Graduated compression stockings can be very helpful in improving flow in the veins and thus reducing leg swelling and discomfort. Walking is also very useful as it improves venous flow.

In brief: Veins in Pregnancy
Varicose veins often develop during pregnancy.
The key causes are high Progesterone levels which cause the vein walls to dilate/relax, increased blood volume, and pressure on veins from the enlarging uterus. Graduated compression stockings can be very helpful in improving flow in the veins and thus reducing leg swelling and discomfort. Walking is also very useful as it improves venous flow.
Dr. Steven Zimmet
Dr. Steven Zimmet
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2 comments
Dr. Ted King
I completely agree with Dr. Zimmet. If, during pregnancy, painful vulvar and labial varices become a problem, using a V2 supporter might also be of benefit.
Dr. Steven Zimmet
That's a good suggestion Dr. King.
5 doctors agree
In brief: Varicose veins
The state of pregnancy causes a relaxation/malfunction of the valves in the veins in the legs which leads to a back-up of blood in the veins with increased pressure of the blood in the veins stretching the vein walls (varicosity).
Wearing good support hose during the pregnancy may help with preventing the development of varicose veins long-term.

In brief: Varicose veins
The state of pregnancy causes a relaxation/malfunction of the valves in the veins in the legs which leads to a back-up of blood in the veins with increased pressure of the blood in the veins stretching the vein walls (varicosity).
Wearing good support hose during the pregnancy may help with preventing the development of varicose veins long-term.
Dr. Mark Aranson
Dr. Mark Aranson
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Dr. Thomas Wright
Phlebology
5 doctors agree
In brief: Hormones and fluid
When you are pregnant 25 % your body weight increase is from fluid.
The reservoir for circulating fluid when you are upright are your leg veins. Progesterone, a principle pregnancy hormone, cause smooth muscle & veins to dilate. So in genetically susceptible ladies it is the perfect storm for varicose vein development. Dont fret, they will get better after delivery but they still might need treatment.

In brief: Hormones and fluid
When you are pregnant 25 % your body weight increase is from fluid.
The reservoir for circulating fluid when you are upright are your leg veins. Progesterone, a principle pregnancy hormone, cause smooth muscle & veins to dilate. So in genetically susceptible ladies it is the perfect storm for varicose vein development. Dont fret, they will get better after delivery but they still might need treatment.
Dr. Thomas Wright
Dr. Thomas Wright
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5 doctors agree
In brief: Venous Hypertension
Pressure on your pelvic veins, from your baby, is making it harder for blood to return to your heart from your legs.
As the blood accumulates, pressure builds in the deep and superficial venous system. You can think of varicose veins as little pop-off valves that are relieving this increased pressure by providing a space for your other veins to decompress into.

In brief: Venous Hypertension
Pressure on your pelvic veins, from your baby, is making it harder for blood to return to your heart from your legs.
As the blood accumulates, pressure builds in the deep and superficial venous system. You can think of varicose veins as little pop-off valves that are relieving this increased pressure by providing a space for your other veins to decompress into.
Dr. Alexander Vogel
Dr. Alexander Vogel
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1 comment
Dr. Ted King
In addition to pressure from your enlarging uterus, you also have a lot more blood circulating through your body. Hormones also cause veins to enlarge as well. The combination of all three things makes getting varicose veins when you are pregnant more likely.
Dr. Lornell Hansen
Phlebology
5 doctors agree
In brief: Agree
I do feel that if you are starting to have varicose veins your physician should get you into a pair of thigh high graduated compression stockings preferably 20 to 30 mmhg otherwise known as class i stockings.

In brief: Agree
I do feel that if you are starting to have varicose veins your physician should get you into a pair of thigh high graduated compression stockings preferably 20 to 30 mmhg otherwise known as class i stockings.
Dr. Lornell Hansen
Dr. Lornell Hansen
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1 comment
Dr. Ted King
Dr. Hansen makes a very good point. Most prescription compression stocking manufacturers make maternity compression pantyhose. If thigh high stockings don't stay up, it might be worth considering pantyhose. If swelling is a problem that 20-30 mmHg stockings aren't controlling very well, it also might be worth considering 30-40 mmHg stockings. They are more difficult to put on though.
Dr. Andrew Doe
Radiology - Interventional
2 doctors agree
In brief: They will get worse
They will get better, but still be damaged.
About 40% of women will need their venous disease treated at some point. Pregnancy accelerates this.

In brief: They will get worse
They will get better, but still be damaged.
About 40% of women will need their venous disease treated at some point. Pregnancy accelerates this.
Dr. Andrew Doe
Dr. Andrew Doe
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Dr. Joel Gotvald
Surgery - Vascular
2 doctors agree
In brief: Pregnancy & Veins
It is extremely common to develop varicose veins during pregnancy or the veins to get much worse & multiply during pregnancy.
The reason is that the enlarged uterus puts increased pressure on the leg veins and pelvic veins. Since there is genetic vein valve weakness in those who develop varicose veins, valve damage is accelerated when the pressure in the leg veins goes up (like during pregnancy).

In brief: Pregnancy & Veins
It is extremely common to develop varicose veins during pregnancy or the veins to get much worse & multiply during pregnancy.
The reason is that the enlarged uterus puts increased pressure on the leg veins and pelvic veins. Since there is genetic vein valve weakness in those who develop varicose veins, valve damage is accelerated when the pressure in the leg veins goes up (like during pregnancy).
Dr. Joel Gotvald
Dr. Joel Gotvald
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Dr. Richard Sheppeck
Surgery - Vascular
1 doctor agrees
In brief: Get stockings
One way to help your veins during pregnancy is to ask your OB about venous compression stockings made specifically for pregnancy.
..They are no fun to put on or take off, but they can help your veins during this time.

In brief: Get stockings
One way to help your veins during pregnancy is to ask your OB about venous compression stockings made specifically for pregnancy.
..They are no fun to put on or take off, but they can help your veins during this time.
Dr. Richard Sheppeck
Dr. Richard Sheppeck
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Dr. John Landi
Phlebology
1 doctor agrees
In brief: Increased Pressure.
During pregnancy with the growing uterus, there is increased pressure placed on the veins in the pelvis and lower abdomen.
This increased pressure causes the venous pressure to increase which is then transmitted down through the veins resulting in the valves in the veins leaking (refluxing) leading to varicose veins. After delivery, the pressure is reduced. See a vein specialist for an evaluation.

In brief: Increased Pressure.
During pregnancy with the growing uterus, there is increased pressure placed on the veins in the pelvis and lower abdomen.
This increased pressure causes the venous pressure to increase which is then transmitted down through the veins resulting in the valves in the veins leaking (refluxing) leading to varicose veins. After delivery, the pressure is reduced. See a vein specialist for an evaluation.
Dr. John Landi
Dr. John Landi
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1 comment
Dr. Steven Zimmet
The causes are multifactorial. The key causes are high progesterone levels which cause the vein walls to dilate/relax, increased blood volume, and pressure on veins from the enlarging uterus.
Dr. Ted King
Phlebology
1 doctor agrees
In brief: Three reasons
The first is hormones, as dr. Zimmet said.
Although there are a few that come into play, the biggest culprit is progesterone. Reason #2 is that the amount of blood in your blood stream when you are pregnant increases by 50%. The third is the pressure on your veins that is created by your enlarging uterus. As others have said, graduated compression stockings help, especially if you have pain.

In brief: Three reasons
The first is hormones, as dr. Zimmet said.
Although there are a few that come into play, the biggest culprit is progesterone. Reason #2 is that the amount of blood in your blood stream when you are pregnant increases by 50%. The third is the pressure on your veins that is created by your enlarging uterus. As others have said, graduated compression stockings help, especially if you have pain.
Dr. Ted King
Dr. Ted King
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Dr. Norman Chideckel
Surgery - Vascular
In brief: Varicose veins pregn
during pregnancy its not unusual to develop varicose veins this is due to increasing size of the uterus with pregnancy also the head of the fetus may be putting pressure on one side or the other which can lead to valve breakage and larger varicose veins often spider veins may develop secondary to hormonal changes most of these will resolve several months after completion of the pregancy

In brief: Varicose veins pregn
during pregnancy its not unusual to develop varicose veins this is due to increasing size of the uterus with pregnancy also the head of the fetus may be putting pressure on one side or the other which can lead to valve breakage and larger varicose veins often spider veins may develop secondary to hormonal changes most of these will resolve several months after completion of the pregancy
Dr. Norman Chideckel
Dr. Norman Chideckel
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Dr. Orlando Puente
Surgery - Vascular
In brief: Compression
The uterus grows and compresses the vessels in the pelvis and that also contributes.

In brief: Compression
The uterus grows and compresses the vessels in the pelvis and that also contributes.
Dr. Orlando Puente
Dr. Orlando Puente
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In brief: One should
Also consider the high female hormone of gestation that is known to dilate blood vessels veins included.

In brief: One should
Also consider the high female hormone of gestation that is known to dilate blood vessels veins included.
Dr. Gabriel Goren
Dr. Gabriel Goren
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