Varicose veins are a common problem that mainly affects the legs, although they can develop elsewhere. The veins become more prominent, showing through your skin as blue or purple lines and loops. As they worsen, the loops start to twist and bulge out from the skin.
Some people develop varicose veins that don’t cause any symptoms, apart from looking unsightly. However, many people find varicose veins make their legs ache and feel uncomfortable. The veins might start itching or feel tender, and they can become ulcerous long term, meaning you develop open sores that are difficult to heal.
Severe varicose veins can form blood clots that can lead to thrombosis, or even pulmonary embolism if a clot breaks away and travels to your lungs.