Legs for Days

A staggering 55 percent of women suffer from unsightly varicose or spider veins. Such imperfections can keep them from showing off their stems in the summer sun. And varicose and spider veins can also cause serious medical conditions, such as swelling, rashes, skin ulcers, and infections. There are many preventative measures that clients can incorporate into their routines according to Luis Navarro, M.D., director of the Vein Treatment Center (New York City). He says, "varicose veins and spider veins are hereditary as there is a congenital predisposition to weak vein walls. However, sometimes their appearance can be delayed and the symptoms can be improved by healthy lifestyles."

Here are the healthy habits he recommends for great legs.

  • "Any type of exercise that strengthens the "second heart"—the muscles of the calf and foot—is beneficial and can help prevent spider/varicose veins," says Navarro. "Exercise for at least 30 minutes a day, 3 times a week. Suggested activities include walking, running, swimming, and bicycling."
  • "Running is especially beneficial to circulation as it keeps deoxygenated blood flowing towards the heart."
  • "If you already have varicose veins, or if they run in your family, wear compression stockings," he says. "Compression stockings act like an added layer of muscle, aiding the performance of the "second heart" and venous circulation."
  • "Hormonal birth control pills can constrict blood vessels and can weaken vein valves and vein walls."
  • "If you are standing/sitting for long periods of time, try to rotate your ankles/feet whenever possible, walk for a few minutes every hour, and point and flex your toes to promote leg vein circulation."
  • "When you get home, raise your feet six-to-12 inches above your heart whenever possible to assist circulation."


If that’s not enough for some clients predisposed to varicose and spider veins, there are effective treatments to help clients get their sexy legs back according to Navarro.

  • "Cryo-Sclerotherapy is the newest unique method to sclerotherapy exclusive to The Vein Treatment Center," he says. "It is completely painless and successfully treats 90 percent of all varicose veins. Cryo-sclerotherapy is a nonsurgical way to remove spider and varicose veins Ice-cold blasts of air as low as -20 degrees Celsius are applied to the injection sites before inserting the sclerosing agent into the affected veins. The cryotherapy machine delivers short bursts of super-cooled air to numb the skin and reduce inflammation during the injections.  This results in a more comfortable procedure, faster cosmetic results, and faster healing time."
  • "For large varicose veins, we use in office Endovenous Laser Abliation (EVLA), in which a laser fiber is used to close the main vein from the inside under local anesthesia and no down time."