SIR: Leaky Vein Valves Time to Menstrual Cycle

MedPage Today

By Crystal Phend, Senior Staff Writer, MedPage Today
Published: March 29, 2011
Reviewed by Zalman S. Agus, MD; Emeritus Professor
University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine and
Dorothy Caputo, MA, RN, BC-ADM, CDE, Nurse Planner

CHICAGO — Where a woman is in her menstrual cycle may affect varicose vein diagnosis, according to a small exploratory study.

Women complaining of classic symptoms of varicose veins but no abnormalities in the long saphenous vein presented a very different picture when they returned right before their menstrual period or when symptomatic, Praveen Anchala, MD, and Scott A. Resnick, MD, both of Northwestern University in Chicago, found.

In a study of five such women, four had significant saphenous vein insufficiency on subsequent evaluation, they reported here at the Society of Interventional Radiology meeting.

Long saphenous vein diameter rose 73% on average between the evaluations.

“When evaluating menorrheal patients with history indicating likely insufficiency but no objective findings on initial evaluation, it may be beneficial to reevaluate these patients in the immediate premenstrual period,” Anchala told attendees at the session.

John A. Kaufman, MD, of the Oregon Health & Science University Hospital in Portland, agreed.

“This is a very interesting observation in a small number of patients that could have significant consequences with respect to the diagnosis and management of venous reflux in menstruating women,” he told MedPage Today in an email.

Another implication is that “stocking use during menstruation may eliminate symptoms and avoid treating a saphenous vein that is normal most of the time,” said Kaufman, who was not involved in the study.

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Duh….a study needs to be conducted on this? Ask any menstruating  woman with varicose veins and she will tell you that get worse during the paramenstrum. Jeesh…


Author: Leslie Carol Botha

Author, publisher, radio talk show host and internationally recognized expert on women's hormone cycles. Social/political activist on Gardasil the HPV vaccine for adolescent girls. Co-author of "Understanding Your Mood, Mind and Hormone Cycle." Honorary advisory board member for the Foundation for the Study of Cycles and member of the Society for Menstrual Cycle Research.