The cause of varicose veins may usually be due to weak vein valves and walls. Inside the veins there are small one-way valves which open to allow the blood through, then close it to prevent flowing backwards.

Often the vein walls become too stretched and lose elasticity that cause the valves to weaken.

In case, the valves fail to function it can cause blood leaking and flowing backwards. If this ever happens, blood gets collected in your veins that become enlarged and swollen.

Why the vein walls stretch and also valves in the veins are weakened is not fully understood. Few people develop such condition for no apparent reason.

Increased risk

There are number of things that may increase the likelihood of developing varices (English meaning is varicose veins), such as:

  • Being female
  • Being overweight
  • Being pregnant
  • Having a member of close family with varicose veins
  • Having job which involves standing for very long periods
  • Older age


Comparatively women get more affected by such varicose veins as compared to men. As per research, female hormones usually tend to relax walls of veins, thus makes the valves easily prone to leaking.

Our hormones are certain chemicals that is produced by our body, and due to pregnancy, menopause or premenstrual syndrome it may change.

Being overweight

As an overweight extra pressure will be exerted on your veins, that means they will work harder for sending blood back to the heart.

This may put extra amount of pressure on your valves and more prone to such leaking.


The blood amount increases for developing baby during pregnancy which may put extra strain on the veins.

Also, the hormone level increases during pregnancy which may cause muscular walls of your blood vessels to relax that also increases your risk.

Although being pregnant may increase your varicose veins risk and most women will find their veins improve significantly after their baby is born.


If any close family member is having this condition then your risk may increase for developing varicose veins. This means varicose veins is related to your genes.


Few researchers suggest if your job requires standing for very long period, it can increase the risk of varicose veins as your blood will not flow easily when you remain standing for a long time.


Your veins may lose elasticity and stop working well as you grow old.

Other conditions

In certain rare cases, such varicose veins may cause by other conditions which include:

  • Abnormal blood vessels
  • Previous blood clot
  • Swelling or tumour in pelvis