Varicose veins are veins that have become enlarged and swollen because they contain too much blood. These usually occur in veins in the legs.
The most common symptoms of varicose veins are:
Veins have a valve that keeps blood only flowing in one direction, but in some people, the valve stops working correctly, and blood can flow backwards in the veins, making them enlarged and swollen. Varicose veins are fairly common and occur most often in women. Some people are born with defective valves, and some women develop varicose veins after pregnancy. For many people, however, there is no known cause.
For most cases of varicose veins, your doctor may just tell you to elevate your legs when sleeping or wear support socks. If you have developed ulcers on your skin because of varicose veins, surgery may be required. If you are in severe pain or have chronic skin ulcers, you may have the option of having a procedure that removes the veins.
That depends. Social Security does not specifically list varicose veins as a disabling impairment, but varicose veins are usually a symptom of something that is called chronic venous insufficiency (CVI). For persons with CVI, prolonged sitting or standing can be painful, and walking can be difficult.If you have chronic venous insufficiency that is severe enough, you can qualify for disability. For more information, see our article on disability and chronic venous insufficiency.
If you don't qualify under the chronic venous insufficiency listing, Social Security will look at all of the evidence and decide if your impairment and related symptoms are so severe that there is no work you can perform. This is unlikely for varicose veins alone, but if you have another medical condition that limits you from standing or walking for extended periods, you have a better chance. You can learn more about when Social Security will find you can't do any work.