Varicose Veins During Pregnancy

Arteries and veins are responsible for circulating blood in our bodies. ‘Varicose veins’ is a condition that affects the veins mostly in the legs and causes them to become enlarged. The enlargement of the veins results from overfilling blood. These veins look dark purple in colour and can be clearly seen on the surface of the skin. They can be painful and swollen. The condition may make you feel heavy as well as uncomfortable.

Varicose veins can be caused by a variety of factors such as physical inactivity, lifestyle changes, being overweight, eating high-fat foods, and not getting enough fibre in the diet etc. In addition, varicose veins can also be caused by pregnancy.

Women’s bodies go through many changes during pregnancy. The body’s blood circulation undergoes various modifications. Blood moves around the body in high quantities and more actively. But the blood around the waist and the uterus areas moves slowly. Consequently, the pressure in the blood vessels of the lower back, thighs, and uterus is increased.

Additionally, the uterus grows in size in order to supply the growing baby with optimal nutrition. The veins carry blood back to the heart from different body parts including the legs. In order to return blood to the heart, the veins of the legs must work against gravity. Moreover, during pregnancy, the blood moves slowly in different areas and puts pressure on all the veins.

During pregnancy, progesterone is secreted heavily, causing the blood vessels to relax. Varicose veins can be developed by all of these factors in the legs, thighs and also in the vulvar region.

You don’t have to worry too much because varicose veins that develop during pregnancy are temporary and usually disappear after giving birth. Varicose veins can be prevented by following a few simple measures.

Pregnant women can avoid varicose veins using some simple techniques, which include:


Exercise should be part of your daily routine. In order to keep your body active, your gynaecologist may suggest you do some exercises.

Avoid sedentary positions (Avoid sitting for long periods of time)

Avoid sitting or standing for long periods in the same position for long periods of time. Changing your position every 20 minutes is recommended. During pregnancy, walking is considered as one of the best forms of exercise you can do regularly. Walking allows the baby to move actively and also provides good blood flow. When you are sitting, do not cross your legs.

Compression stockings

During pregnancy, you can wear maternity support hosiery as prescribed by your doctor. Try wearing them during day time as much as possible. They will exert pressure on your legs, and stimulate blood flow. However, wearing extremely tight stockings should be avoided. 

Relaxing your legs

Get your legs stretched by raising them a foot off the ground. Your calf muscles can also be stretched and relaxed alternately by shifting your feet. Keeping one or two pillows under your legs will help you relax. This will allow the blood to flow upwards.

Healthy diet

You can stay healthy by eating a balanced diet. Make sure you consume enough fibre. In addition to fresh fruits and vegetables, whole wheat flour, and grains are very good sources of fibre. Make sure that you drink a lot of water to stay hydrated throughout the day. All these tips help you to maintain a normal body weight which eventually prevents varicose veins.

Varicose veins tend to disappear after delivery in most cases. However, these conditions may cause discomfort during childbirth in some cases.

People with varicose veins might experience symptoms like soreness, pain, swelling and some people may experience cramps and itchiness. You can see and feel varicose veins easily on the legs. 

It is very important to seek the help of an expert doctor if you are experiencing severe leg pain and heaviness. Dr. Pradyumna Reddy, one of the best Interventional Radiologists in Hyderabad trained in varicose veins with advanced radiology methods. He treated numerous patients with varicose veins during pregnancy. Call +91 88865 66445 to book an appointment with Dr Pradyumna Reddy.