Bulging veins & leg pain = I'm dying? Or what?
November 4, 2011 6:57 AM Subscribe
Bulging veins and pain. Am I dying? And if not, what is going on?
posted by toomuchkatherine to Health & Fitness (15 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
I'm traveling away from home and trying to decide what to do about a medical question. You are not my doctor!
So here's the deal. I'm a tall, pale woman (32, thin, fairly fit) who's always had some visible veins. A month ago, I began to notice that the veins on my arms and hands seemed a lot more visible than usual, wider and more ropey. It caused me a little alarm but I figured maybe it was just part of aging. Sometimes I felt like there was too much blood inside my body, which was weird. But I had my blood pressure checked around that time and it was normal.
Two weeks ago, developed a pain in my inner right thigh. I could feel it in two different places, a pinching/throbbing, not intense but definitely noticeable. Not in a joint and not seemingly in a muscle. Vein pain? At the same time, veins towards the inside of my right shin were popping out, especially after a shower or workout, like they do. I'd long had what looked like a few broken valves there (varicose vein caused by running on pavement, is my hypothesis), but they seemed to be getting worse, and more of them, connecting to each other. And they looked more blue than before, even when they weren't bulging. More alarming!
I've been tracking the pain since then. It never gets to an unbearable level but it also hasn't gone away. The thigh hurts less now, but the ankle began hurting: feels like a bruise but doesn't look like one. That pain now seems to be creeping up the shin. Sometimes the back of the knee hurts too.
I haven't been to the doctor yet primarily because I've been away from home this whole time and will be for one more week. I'm staying with family, completing a major project (book!) to deadline, so I don't have a lot of time to spare. But the problem doesn't seem to be going away either, and it's upsetting and creeping me out. I called my doctor back at home about a week ago when I was afraid it was a blood clot. He told me it doesn't sound like one to him, that there'd be swelling and/or a hard mass. Though I've also read they often don't cause any symptoms at all.
Bulging veins + roving leg pain + maybe varicose vein in the leg = What could it be? I've been under a lot of stress lately (for months, really), and wonder if that could play into it and whether it makes it likely that things will get better when stress abates. I've stopped running as of about two weeks ago, started taking horse chestnut, sometimes aspirin. Am I just getting ordinary varicose veins and being cranky about it? Could it be something else up w/ my circulation? When I do make it to the doctor, what should I ask? Is there any reason I should try to see someone within the next week rather than waiting? I don't exactly feel like E.R. material. Family belongs to an HMO so seeing their doctor isn't really possible. Thanks for any help!