Many scenarios can cause weakened or damaged veins, but smoking and varicose veins go hand in hand. Most think that the lungs are the only internal body part being damaged from smoking, but the greatest concern should be on the body’s blood flow system – which includes the veins.
The carbon monoxide from smoking (and even breathing in secondhand smoke) damages the thin layer of cells inside the blood vessels which help ensure smooth blood flow within the vessels. When this inside layer becomes damaged, fat and plaque are able to stick to the blood vessel walls, making it weaker, and in turn causing varicose veins to form because of the smoking. Nicotine also does great damage to blood vessels.
We recommend those with varicose veins to stop smoking to avoid complications and surgery. If surgery becomes necessary, call the Vein Center at 804-477-8613 to book a screening.