Vein Reflux in Men
One question I receive often with patients is, "Are men as susceptible to vein conditions as women?" The answer is simply, yes! While it is more common in women, it is also a common occurrence with men. And I can speak from personal experience, as I have struggled with vein reflux since I was in my 20's.
There are two myths and one important fact around vein conditions that cause men to be less likely to seek treatment than women, even though they are just as likely to suffer from a vein condition.
Myth #1 - Only Women Suffer from a Vein Condition.
I think what hinders most people from thinking that vein reflux is uncommon in males is the fact that they more regularly hear stories about women suffering from a vein condition, even though it is a human problem and not necessarily a gender-specific one. Men can and do suffer from a vein condition. I treat men in my office regularly and many of them tell me they wish they'd sought treatment sooner.
Myth #2. - A Vein Condition is Purely Cosmetic.
What's more, a vein condition is too often seen as simply a cosmetic issue, regardless of the fact the most common indicators of the presence of a vein condition are invisible. Women are typically more likely to be concerned with the physical appearance of their legs when they suffer from things like bulging veins and spider veins. However, because of the nature of a vein condition, treating it is ultimately more about creating a healthy and positive body self-image, and that is something everyone - men and women alike - has in common.
Fact #1 - Men Typically Avoid Going to the Doctor...for Anything.
Women are also more likely to seek medical attention when faced with physical symptoms, compared to men. At the risk of stereotyping an entire gender, most men don’t spend much time talking about or seeking medical help with their health issues. Typically, men downplay symptoms, and it's common for men to delay going to a doctor. When men do seek medical attention they're often reluctant to ask about "minor" problems like varicose veins, fatigue, spider veins, and leg swelling. Some men consider it "unmanly" to report varicose vein pain, and want to appear strong for their family and loved ones.
For Women Who May Be Reading This
Women are most commonly the household medical directors and will take action on behalf of their families. Men may be reticent to make an appointment or seek treatment, but this isn't something that can be ignored. For women who are reading this, remind your man that this is a condition that can affect not only your health but your ability to function at work...and ultimately your job security.
It's important to take action. If left untreated, a vein condition will worsen over time. That means that a man or woman with a vein condition will slowly lose their ability to participate in normal daily activities. Fatigue and leg pain will result in a sedentary lifestyle as an individual turns to their recliner in the evenings to elevate their legs. This ultimately results in weight gain and the potential onset of additional health problems - ultimately affecting a man's ability to work and provide for his family.
In the video below, I go into more detail on ways men suffer from and manage, or rather tend to not manage, their vein reflux conditions:
A Costly Mistake Men Make
Men are often the primary income-generator for their families. Because other people are depending on them, men should take their health seriously and address issues like vein reflux when they arise. Instead of avoiding treatment and trying to "gut it out", it's important for men to quit ignoring health concerns or thinking that the symptoms of a vein condition are just the result of them getting older. Men experience leg pain, swelling, chronic fatigue - and it affects their ability to provide for their families. I've seen situations where a vein condition has gotten bad enough that men were literally unable to work and some have ultimately lost their jobs.
It doesn't have to come to this.
How You Can Take Steps Toward Better Vein Health
If you are a man who is experiencing symptoms or if you are a woman and are responsible for the healthcare decisions in your home and want the best for the man that you love, the best way to start is to schedule a vein screening appointment.
Simply "dealing" with vein condition symptoms does not have to be your reality. Our clinics offer a free even screening in which one of our staff will review your symptoms, look at your legs, and let you know if further evaluation with me is needed. And the good news is that the majority of our patients experience immediate improvement in their symptoms after the first treatment. So, if this sounds like the right step for you, give us a call or click on the link below to get started.