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Why Do My Legs Feel Heavy?

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Have you ever experienced your legs feeling heavier than normal? It is a common feeling, so know that you are not alone. You likely have many questions about why your legs feel heavy, and what you can do about it.

Today is your lucky day. In this article we are discussing all things related to heavy legs and what you can do if you find yourself suffering from heavy, aching or weak legs.

Your Questions About Heavy Legs, Answered

Why do my legs feel heavy?

The heavy feeling in legs typically is a result of poor circulation. Circulation issues are experienced more in the lower part of your body (primarily the legs) because this part of your body has to fight hard against gravity to get the blood all the way back up to your heart. Thus, if your circulation is weak, then blood may end up pooling in your legs as well as your feet and ankles.

What causes the heavy feeling in my legs?

The circulation issues you are experiencing in your legs are a result of venous insufficiency. Your veins are damaged or broken, and are unable to properly circulate your blood back up to your heart, and thus are causing that heavy leg sensation.

The heavy feeling can come from the excess blood that is in your legs, unable to properly flow. You can also feel heaviness in your legs due to swelling as the blood pools.

If left untreated, the venous insufficiency can turn into varicose veins, as well as other potential vein diseases.

There are some factors that may be putting you at risk of developing venous insufficiency, varicose veins, and other vein issues. The most common factors that lead to vein issues are:

  • Sedentary lifestyle
  • Hormones
  • Age
  • Obesity
  • Genes
  • Lack of exercise

By ensuring that you are exercising regularly, moving around throughout the day, and keeping your weight in check, you cut out some potential risks for developing vein problems.

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However, if it’s too late for prevention, and you do end up finding yourself suffering from the above vein issues — don’t worry, there are varicose and spider vein treatment options.

How do you treat vein issues?

There are a number of different treatment options at Vein Clinics of America that are all safe, quick, and out-patient.

Sclerotherapy

Sclerotherapy is used to treat small and medium leg vein issues, mostly commonly spider and varicose veins. It is performed by your doctor injecting the damaged vein with a liquid that closes the vein.

Endovenous Laser Therapy (EVLT)

This form of treatment is used to treat large vein disease and large varicose veins on your legs. These veins are usually below the surface and not able to be seen without ultrasound. It is performed by your doctor inserting a small catheter into the diseased vein and using laser lights to generate heat, which then causes the vein to collapse.

Radiofrequency Ablation (RFA)

Radiofrequency ablation is used to treat large vein disease and large varicose veins on your legs. These veins are usually below the surface and not able to be seen without ultrasound. It is performed by your doctor inserting a small catheter into the diseased vein. Through this catheter, heat is delivered to collapse the vein.

VenaSeal

This approach to varicose vein treatment is also referred to as endovenous adhesive ablation. VenaSeal is performed by your doctor using a small catheter to put medical adhesive into your damaged vein to close that vein. This helps to redirect blood to healthy veins.

Phlebectomy

This treatment works best for removing varicose veins near the surface of your skin. Phlebectomy is performed by your doctor making a number of small punctures in your skin, and through those punctures, removing the damaged vein. This approach to vein treatment typically occurs without the need for stitches, and is often done with ELVA or radiofrequency ablation.

Want your legs to feel light again?

Medically Reviewed by

Dr. Satish Vayuvegula
Dr. Satish Vayuvegula is the National Medical Director at Vein Clinics of America. Certified by the American Board of Venous & Lymphatic Medicine, Dr. Satish Vayuvegula is recognized as a physician who has met rigorous standards of knowledge and extensive training in phlebology, the diagnosis and treatment of varicose vein disease and related disorders. Dr. Satish also shares his passion and expertise by serving as a board member of the American Vein and Lymphatic Society, the predominant national organization for venous and lymphatic disease.

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