Is a Tattoo the Answer to Those Frustrating Varicose Veins?
- Posted on: Nov 30 2018
Tattoos are no longer the blurred figures seen on the forearms of an aging soldier. Today, men and women of all ages get tattoos as a way to express themselves and feel good about their appearance. We can fully understand the trend for its aesthetic purposes. However, it has recently come to light that some people consider getting inked as a way to mask the appearance of varicose veins. This is not something we recommend. Here, we discuss why.
First, a Look at Varicose Veins
One of the most important facts we can offer about varicose veins, as well as spider veins, is that these conditions are not merely cosmetic. Varicose veins indicate venous insufficiency and vein disease. That means a varicose vein is a medical problem, not a cosmetic nuisance.
Varicose veins bulge because blood has pooled in one or more areas of the vein. Blood pools because the valve that pushes blood onward and out of the vein (back to the heart) is not strong enough to prevent backflow. Once this process begins, it continues with increasing pressure within the vein and increased weakness of the vein walls.
Why a Tattoo is Not the Answer
Can tattoos be safe and cosmetically pleasing? Yes. Could you get a tattoo in a place where you once had a varicose vein? Absolutely! Just treat the vein first; don’t view a tattoo as the ultimate answer to the unattractive vein.
One of the reasons not to tattoo over a varicose vein is that the vein is weak. Though uncommon, there is a slight chance that a superficial vein just beneath the skin could get nicked by the tattoo needle. A tiny cut to a varicose vein could lead to exaggerated bleeding because so much blood has pooled in the vein. In some instances of varicose vein bleeding, medical attention is required to suture the vein closed. In this case, the tiny injury to the vein invites infection, which could lead to far more problems than what was there originally.
The more common problem with tattooing over a varicose vein is much simpler: the vein becomes hidden. Not seeing a varicose vein could lead to an “out of sight, out of mind” problem. Covering the vein doesn’t mean it goes away; it doesn’t eliminate uncomfortable symptoms and also doesn’t stop the progression of venous reflux.
There are proven therapies to close varicose veins so you can feel better all around. Learn which approach is right for you by scheduling a visit to our Columbia, SC office by contacting us at (803) 253-8667.