Q: What are varicose veins, and what is the best way to get rid of them?
A. “Varicose veins can be anything from very small and threadlike to bulging and blue,” says Dr. Lisa Kellett of DLK on Avenue (www.dlkonavenue.com). They are a result of genetics, giving birth, standing for long periods of time or trauma to the legs. They occur when the valves in the veins fail, causing a backflow of blood. To prevent them – or to stop them from worsening – wear compression stockings and do frequent calf raises, both of which put pressure on the legs and stop this backflow. However, professional treatments work best. Sclerotherapy uses injections of a vein-irritating substance to close off the veins, and lasers are being used to heat up blood vessels to seal them shut.