Treating Varicose Veins

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Shorts and swimsuit season means that legs are on full display.  It's a time of year people commonly notice varicose veins.

Frank Galicki, of Dallas, started to notice them a while back.

"I inherited them from my mother and my father.  However I'm an athlete, a referee, I work out on a regular basis, I do a lot of work," said Galicki.

Varicose veins are swollen, sometimes twisted veins you can see just under the skin.  They can be unsightly, but can also cause the legs to feel painful, heavy, achy, or itchy.

Dr. Melissa Obmann, a vascular surgeon at Geisinger Wyoming Valley Medical Center near Wilkes-Barre, says women are more commonly affected.

"People usually notice them a little later in life, 30's and 40's, and sometimes in women earlier if they've had children," she said.

Galicki was referred to Dr. Obmann after he noticed itching and soreness in his calf area.  On June 12th, he had a procedure to remove the varicose veins on his left leg.  On July 24th, he'll do the same for his right leg.

"it's caused from people who have jobs where we stand on our feet for long periods of time, where we put pressure on the valves of the veins in our legs," said Dr. Obmann.  She points out that varicose veins aren't dangerous, but can have complications, such as bleeding problems and inflammation.

Frank Galicki says getting them taken care of was the right decision.

"It has increased the time I can spend on my feet.  No problems, no difficulties," he said.

There are varying ways to treat varicose veins.  Talk with your doctor about a referral if you have questions.

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