Understanding Varicose Veins -- Symptoms

What Are the Symptoms of Varicose Veins?

Symptoms of varicose veins include:

  • Prominent dark purple or blue blood vessels, visible on the thigh and calf
  • Aching, tender, heavy, or sore legs, often accompanied by swelling in the ankles or feet after standing for a prolonged length of time


Call Your Doctor About Varicose Veins If:

  • Symptoms becomes incapacitating, or the skin over your varicose veins becomes flaky, ulcerated, discolored, or prone to bleeding -- you could be developing stasis dermatitis. If left untreated, stasis dermatitis can lead to skin infections and chronic leg ulcers.
  • You have red, warm, and tender varicose veins. This may be a sign of phlebitis, which is caused by a blood clot in the vein.
  • You have injured a varicose vein. Control the resulting burst of blood with direct compression and leg elevation. Have your veins evaluated by a vein specialist as this can be a potentially serious complication.

Seek emergency medical help for any excessive bleeding or bleeding that does not stop.


WebMD Medical Reference Reviewed by Debra Jaliman, MD on July 17, 2019



National Heart Lung and Blood Institute: "Explore Varicose Veins."

Mayo Clinic: "Varicose veins."

© 2019 WebMD, LLC. All rights reserved.