I am really hoping someone here will have the knowledge to give me a little advice.
I’m only 30 and very fit, active and healthy but over the the last 2 or so years I’ve noticed a few varicose veins appearing on my inner calves and the last few months they are getting more prominent and more are appearing and really getting me down. I won’t wear anything that shows my legs. I went to my GP around this time last year and she could see how it was affecting my confidence and day-to-day life as a young woman and she did her best to refer me but unfortunately the NHS the way it is at the moment have offered me a consultation in April 2024… I saw my GP in summer 2022 😞 They are only going to get worse and I just can’t wait that long to be seen for the consult and then goodness knows how many more years until any treatment with the way it’s affecting my confidence and I think where it’s summer at the moment I’m just constantly reminded and upset because I can’t wear what I would like to. I know it might sound a “first world” problem considering the world and all the crisis at the moment but it truly is affecting me and I shouldn’t feel like this at 30 years old. I should feel in my prime.
I have looked online at private clinics and it’s so so expensive but I am willing to do it to get my self-esteem back up. I can’t afford upfront payment as it’s seeming to be £250 a consultation and between £1500-£3500 depending on the treatment they suggest so it’d be either on finance or taking out a loan/credit card etc.
If you’ve got this far thank you so much for reading ❤️ So if anyone has any suggestions where to go/where to look and advice or has had treatment and willing to chat at all I’d be so appreciative.
Also in the meantime if you have any tips on how to hide them, perhaps fake tan etc? I’m really pale so I think that probably highlights them more? I’m not sure. I’m just at a loss so I’d love if anyone can help xx
Self-esteem, young, varicose veins.
S25 · 10/07/2023 19:43
Phineyj · 10/07/2023 20:22
Are they causing you discomfort or is it just how they look?
I'm thinking that as you are so young, you could consider taking out health insurance and claiming on that in a year or so.
I had two lots of varicose surgery (laser, day case) on an AXA PPP policy.
I sympathise. Some of us are genetically unlucky in this regard. I've had them since your age and several surgeries later, my legs look pretty decent (for me) at age 50 and I've worn shorts for the first time this year!
OhGingleBells · 10/07/2023 20:24
I have calf stretch marks so not nearly as upsetting as varicose veins but the same sort of thing. Honestly the only thing I have been able to do is wear skirts and dresses that cover that part of my legs. It’s enough hassle putting make up on my face (and chest for the stretch marks there) without trying to keep my legs covered too. Floaty kaftan kind of things for the beach or pool. Once I started wearing long skirts and dresses I’ve never wanted to go back! Always feel swishy and elegant and as I tend to have scraped up bruised legs as well it seems like a win-win.
So sorry it’s getting you down - unfortunately I have no experience of treatment but I’m sure a private consultant would be able to see how distressing it is for you.
Will add that I doubt anyone sees them as badly as you can and I can’t imagine many people noticing them much really. That said, I can really empathise with how you feel - it’s so horrible when you feel limited by your body and it’s so hard to find the confidence to embrace flaws. Summer isn’t an easy time.
Best of luck.
frozendaisy · 10/07/2023 20:53
You can go back to your GP and ask who they would recommend you go and see to go private.
I needed an adult tonsillectomy which would have taken 2-3 years via NHS and my tonsils would have killed me with sepsis by then, they were trying very very hard to, so I went to my GP, said I can go private, they agreed they would as well and made a referral to the local private ENT surgeon, we cremated the buggers 7 weeks later (would have been 3 weeks but I requested the 4 week delay).
intergalacticplanetary · 10/07/2023 20:00
I feel your pain. I've had a really unsightly varicose vein since I was about 14. I'm now early 40s and have never worn a short dress without tights on. I'm so self-conscious about it. Can only go bare legged if I wear maxi dresses or midis that cover it. Hopefully someone can offer some useful advice but just to say I know how you feel x
User6424678852 · 10/07/2023 21:00
I’ve had them since my early 30s. Was referred to consultant on the NHS (2 year wait) who said that treatment was to surgically strip out and cauterise the veins, would be horribly painful in recovery, and would only defer the problem as they would just reoccur in other veins within a few years, gradually getting worse each time.
So I just got used to wearing support socks constantly, only wearing dresses with support tights, and never wearing shorts 😥
That advise was 10 years ago, and it never occurred to me to doubt it, but I’d be really interested to hear from anyone who’s had successful treatment that lasted!
Smoothiecarton · 10/07/2023 21:14
IMO the consultation is worth it , because you may only need some sclerotherapy, which is far cheaper and still very effective. You may of course need laser , but don’t forget that the consultation letter can be sent to your gp and may speed up the process for nhs referral in any case (I for instance had had lots of incidences of phlebitis and lots of water retention in my legs and had had 3 courses of heparin injections, it was more than a cosmetic problem).
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