Family History, Age Play Major Role in Varicose and Spider Veins

Legacy Vein Clinic offers minimally invasive alternatives to vein surgery

MISHAWAKA, Ind. — Varicose veins affect up to 25 percent of women and 15 percent of men, according to the Vascular Disease Foundation. Experts at Legacy Vein Clinic in Mishawaka say most people are surprised to learn that the main factor contributing to the formation of these unsightly and sometimes painful veins is heredity.

“A variety of factors can influence the development of varicose and spider veins, but family history is the number one contributing factor,” said Michael Lulenski, M.D., an interventional radiologist at Legacy Vein Clinic specializing in laser ablation of varicose veins.

Varicose veins are large, raised, swollen blood vessels that usually develop in the legs and can be seen through the skin. Spider veins are smaller red, purple and blue vessels that are also easily visible through the skin — most often on the legs and face.

Age also plays a significant role in the development of these veins. By the age of 50, nearly 40 percent of women and 20 percent of men have significant leg vein problems. Varicose and spider veins may cause no problems other than being unsightly. However, a significant percentage of varicose veins can lead to ankle and leg swelling, heaviness or tension, aching, restlessness, cramps and itching.

For 47-year-old Dawn Bombrys of Grainger, her family history and career as a surgical nurse finally caught up to her. Her varicose veins had become unsightly and even painful unless she wore compression hose. Both of Bombrys’ legs were treated for varicose and spider veins at Legacy Vein Clinic.

“Vein stripping used to be all there was,” Bombrys said. “I knew there were better procedures available with less pain and less recovery time, so I wanted to look at those before I went to a surgeon for the traditional procedure.”

“The staff at Legacy were professional, yet made me feel very comfortable and explained everything. I had a good experience with them and my legs are doing great,” she continued.

Traditional varicose vein surgery involves stripping the damaged vessels from the leg with resulting surgical scars and the potential for complications. New, minimally invasive outpatient procedures available today use local anesthesia. The patient is able to return home with compression hose and resume normal activities in a matter of days.

Legacy Vein Clinic uses endovenous laser treatment (EVLT) and microphlebectomy to treat varicose veins. Sclerotherapy is used to treat spider veins. Most insurance plans provide benefits for medical treatment of varicose veins, and Legacy Vein Clinic offers free screenings for individuals to help diagnose and determine treatment options.

For more information about varicose and spider vein treatment or to schedule a free screening, contact Legacy Vein Clinic at 574-272-5347 or visit

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