Vein Reflux in Teens and Young Adults
Because they are building their dreams and futures, young people are typically not thinking about their vein health. Studies show that over 80 million people in the U.S suffer from vein disorders, and these numbers are not limited to older adults. Young adults and teens can and do experience the symptoms of a vein condition, and often dismiss it.
Dr. Ryan's Story
I have personally experienced vein symptoms at a young age but wasn't fully aware of it at the time. I was a 15-year teenager when saw a bulging vein on my calf and I knew that wasn't normal. In my young adult years, I noticed leg pain and fatigue, but just put up with it since it wasn't really slowing me down. I was 25 years old in medical school and I found that standing all day long in the operating rooms was killing me. My legs really hurt. I did get relief with compression stockings for a while, and then they stopped working. I eventually got my legs treated. Much to my amazement, my pain, aching and cramps went away! Until then, I had thought leg pain was an old person’s disease. I know now that it’s not.
In the video below, I go into more detail on some questions many have when it comes to vein reflux specifically in teens and young adults:
Although vein reflux is more common as people get older, it is something we see in teens and young adults. It doesn't mean you are unusual...it is just the way some people are primarily because they inherited it from their parents. If there is someone in their family that has struggled with a vein condition, it is very likely that you will too.
How Concerned Should I Be?
If signs of a vein condition start to appear in your teens or twenties, parents or family members may be concerned about what this means and is this indicative of something more serious for your health. The presence of a vein condition at this age is not associated with an increased risk of serious medical problems such as blood clots. What is the significance of a vein condition at this age? It will progress and the symptoms will worsen as you age.
Typical Vein Symptoms Found in Teens and Young Adults
It's important to know that there are both visible and invisible signs of a vein condition and to know what to watch for:
- Invisible signs include tenderness in the leg, aching, swelling, throbbing, and fatigue. If you are experiencing fatigue, especially in the evening, or after what seems like a good night's sleep...it may be the result of a vein condition. Fatigue is a classic but silent symptom.
- Visible indicators include spider veins, especially around the ankles, bulging ropey veins, blue veins, and swelling.
What Steps Should I Take Moving Forward?
If you are not quite sure if your leg symptoms, fatigue, or visible veins are significant, the best way to know for sure is to schedule a vein screening. 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.