Flying with Varicose vein symptoms

Varicose veins can be problematic on long journeys. Micheal Gaunt offers his advice and support to help you manage varicose vein symptoms.

Recently featured in The Great British Life  you can read  Michael Gaunt’ professional advice to help make your holiday travelling more comfortable:  read more>

Keep moving

Travelling and inactivity needn’t go hand in hand. Making the most of every opportunity to move your legs, ankles and feet will help boost circulation and improve blood flow.

By stimulating your circulation you immediately minimise varicose vein symptoms and the risk of complications such as DVT, deep vein thrombosis.

Simple excercises you can manage whilst travelling include ankle rotations, lifting your heels off the floor, raising your legs and short walks. Repeat intermittently during travel.

Pre-flight assessment

You can book a consultation with Mr Michael Gaunt to assess your varicose veins and vascular health before you travel. He will listen to your concerns, personally talk you through any required treatments and offer his expert advice on managing symptoms.

Before travelling it’s wise to consider a vascular health assessment, especially if you suffer with painful legs and varicose veins.



Travelling with varicose veins: embark on your next adventure with confidence

Healthy legs: varicose vein treatment

Can I fly with varicose veins? Discover how to keep your legs healthy while travelling and learn valuable tips to prevent varicose veins from dampening your wanderlust.

“I paid for a pre-travel assessment with Michael Gaunt, it was the best money I spent”

Concerned about managing leg cramps and  varicose veins? From long flights to scenic hikes, we’ve got you covered. Read our blog now and start planning your next journey with peace of mind!

Walking barefoot along a beach on holiday
Photo: Lia-Stepanov

Work life balance

So many of us are setting out on new adventures as we regain our work life balance, working remotely or retiring early. The zest for life is multi-generational with retirement no longer seen as an opportunity to slow-down. Baby boomers are into self-care, active holidays, cultural tours, luxury stays and cruises, they are no longer the stay-at-home generation. Far from it.

“Nothing beats the feeling of freedom and the opportunity to see the world”

Embracing adventure at any age! 

Getting older doesn’t mean slowing down. In fact, it can be the perfect time to embrace new adventures and experiences. Whether it’s trekking through the Amazon rainforest, exploring ancient ruins in Greece, or simply relaxing on a pristine beach in the Caribbean, the world is yours to discover.

Now you can plan longer trips, take spontaneous getaways, or pursue hobbies and interests that align with your travel aspirations.

Prioritising Vascular Health

While the allure of travel is undeniable, it’s crucial to pay attention to your vascular health, especially as you age. Vascular conditions, such as varicose veins, can affect individuals of any age but become more prevalent as you get older. Varicose veins are enlarged, twisted veins that often appear blue or dark purple and can cause discomfort, swelling, and aching in the legs.

“I was anxious about flying with painful, lumpy varicose veins” 

Flying with varicose veins: before and after varicose vein treatment by Mr Michael Gaunt.
Photo: Before and after varicose vein treatment by Mr Michael Gaunt

Varicose veins signs and symptoms

Bulging, twisted faulty veins in the lower leg and ankles, allowing blood to travel in the wrong direction.

  • Raised bulging veins on skin
  • Swollen feet and ankles
  • Aching, heavy legs
  • Muscle cramps, twitching in your legs
  • Red or darkened skin over the affected area
  • Blue veins under the skin surface

Tips for travelling with varicose veins

Long hours of sitting during flights or car rides, coupled with dehydration and changes in altitude, can exacerbate vascular issues. Prolonged inactivity can increase the risks of developing DVT, deep vein thrombosis. Therefore, it’s essential to take pro-active steps to care for your vascular health while travelling.

Travelling with varicose veins top tips:

  1. Stay Active: Incorporate regular movement into your travel itinerary. Take breaks during long journeys to stretch your legs, go for short walks, or engage in low-impact exercises like yoga or swimming.
  2. Hydrate: Proper hydration is vital for maintaining healthy blood circulation. Drink plenty of water, especially during flights or in hot climates, to prevent dehydration and reduce the risk of blood clots.
  3. Wear Compression Socks: Compression socks can help improve circulation and alleviate symptoms associated with varicose veins. Wear them during long flights or extended periods of sitting to minimize discomfort and swelling in your legs.
  4. Elevate Your Legs: Whenever possible, elevate your legs to reduce swelling and improve blood flow. Use pillows or footrests to prop up your legs while resting, whether you’re on a plane, train, or in your hotel room.
  5. Choose Comfortable Footwear: Opt for shoes with good arch support and cushioning to minimize strain on your feet and legs. Avoid high heels or tight-fitting shoes, as they can exacerbate circulation issues and contribute to discomfort.
  6. Practise Healthy Habits: Maintain a balanced diet, limit alcohol consumption, and avoid smoking, as these lifestyle factors can impact vascular health. Incorporate nutrient-rich foods, such as fruits, vegetables, and lean proteins into your meals to support overall wellbeing.

Find out out to book a consultation>

Pre-travel varicose vein and vascular health assessment

Contact Mr Michael Gaunt, consultant vascular surgeon, for an in-depth review of your varicose veins and vascular health. He will personally answer your concerns, examine your legs, perform a Duplex ultrasound scan and organise a bespoke treatment plan and varicose vein surgery if needed.

Going on holiday when you have painful varicose veins?

Are you planning a holiday, but are worried about long distance travel with varicose veins? Share your experience:

Book a consultation>  Call 01223 305858 and Mr Gaunt’s administrative team will book a consultation for you.

Varicose veins during and after pregnancy – what you need to know.

Photo by Pelayo Arbués on Unsplash

Why am I susceptible to varicose veins during pregnancy?

Many women first notice varicose veins during pregnancy, when significant weight fluctuations and hormone changes impact on the development and symptoms of varicose veins. Unfortunately, broken veins and spider veins may also develop, with some mothers-to-be experiencing uncomfortable swollen ankles and suffering from poor circulation.

With the increase of blood during pregnancy, progesterone levels rise, prompting the walls of your blood vessels to relax. Your body has to work harder to return blood back to your heart, significantly increasing the risks of developing varicose veins in your legs.

Will varicose veins affect my pregnancy?

The good news is that varicose veins do not affect your baby and most certainly do not put your unborn child at risk.  However, they can be troublesome, with on-going symptoms, often worse at night and increasing as the pregnancy reaches full term.

What causes varicose veins?

Varicose veins are caused by weaknesses in veins’ valves which prevent blood flowing properly between each of the vessels. If a one-way valve fails, the blood refluxes and gets stored in the veins near the surface of the skin. This makes the vein expand, causing it to twist and protrude, presenting as a lumpy raised vein, either deep blue or red in appearance.

Top symptoms of varicose veins

  • Aching or heavy feeling in your legs
  • Painful throbbing, muscle cramping and swelling in your lower legs
  • Swollen ankles
  • Worsened pain after sitting or standing for a long time
  • Restless legs, especially at night
  • Persistent leg itching
  • Skin discolouration around the ankles

How can I reduce varicose vein discomfort?

  •  Move around as much as possible and take frequent breaks if you have to stand or sit for long periods of time
  • Wear maternity support or compression tights

What varicose vein treatments are available?

 Successful treatment depends on careful pre-operative assessment. Reviewing visible swollen veins are just the tip of the iceberg. Mr Michael Gaunt assesses the underlying vascular condition before deciding upon the most suitable treatment for each patient.

“I perform a full diagnostic assessment with a Duplex ultrasound scan to identify the problematic veins and underlying problem before recommending the best procedure and treatment plan for you”

 As one of the most experienced and respected surgeons in the UK, Michael Gaunt takes pride in delivering the highest quality of award-winning patient service and he specialises in minimally invasive treatments for varicose veins using:

  • Endovenous Laser Ablation (EVLA)
  • VNUS Closure
  • ClariVein
  • Sclerotherapy
  • Microsclerotherapy
  • VeinWave

Recommended after the birth, these procedures can be performed under local anaesthetic as walk in / walk out treatments, allowing you time to enjoy your new family with little impact on your busy lifestyle.

To learn more or to book an appointment with Mr Michael Gaunt call his specialist team on 01223 305858


Photo by Pelayo Arbués on Unsplash

How to avoid varicose veins

Healthy legs: varicose vein treatment

Leading consultant vascular surgeon Mr Michael Gaunt offers his advice:

Varicose veins are very common, affecting at least 20% of the adult UK population. Symptoms can vary from unsightly, raised bulging veins to chronic leg pain and daily discomfort.

Many varicose vein symptoms increase with age or a sedentary lifestyle. Most of us are familiar with the advice to exercise regularly to avoid health risks associated with poor circulation. Did you know poor posture and lack of movement can lead to muscular stiffness, aches, and pains as well as affect your venous circulation.

Poor venous circulation symptoms:

  • Aches and pains
  • Restless legs
  • Itching skin
  • Swelling in your lower leg
  • Varicose veins
  • Thread veins
  • Skin discolouration around the ankles
  • Leg ulcers

A healthy lifestyle, eating well and finding ways to stay active is important and even more so if you have varicose veins, as weight gain can make symptoms seem worse.

Get active and improve your vein health

Varicose veins impair circulation, that’s why they often appear raised or bobbly. Instead of all the blood from the legs returning to the heart, a proportion of blood refluxes back down the superficial veins impairing the venous circulation of the leg and giving rise to the symptoms of aching, swelling and night cramps.

Poor circulation occurs when the blood doesn’t flow freely through the body. Blood flow naturally improves with the onset of activity, it needn’t be high impact, but it does need to be consistent and frequent.

You don’t have to run a marathon to improve your circulation, little changes like taking regular breaks if sitting at a desk all day, will help, and may temporarily reduce varicose vein symptoms.

Can I prevent varicose veins?

Unfortunately, you can’t prevent varicose veins, however the best way to avoid complications is to seek professional treatment early and not ignore symptoms. In the developing stages, varicose veins and thread veins may be primarily a cosmetic problem but if left untreated the condition can deteriorate and a variety of complications can occur such as leg swelling, pigmentation of the skin around the ankles and leg ulcers.

Top Tips for good vein care

  • Vary your day to include movement
  • Stretch and change your posture regularly
  • Alternatively flex and extend your ankle in a pumping action
  • Monitor your skin and vein changes
  • Seek a professional consultation and treatment package (link)
  • Varicose vein complications

Enlarged varicose veins appear twisted and raised on the skin. If left untreated further venous health complications may develop :

  • Increased pain and discomfort
  • Swelling and inflammation
  • Skin changes: broken skin and discolouration
  • Venous ulceration
  • Looking for varicose vein treatment?

Book a consultation with internationally renowned Mr Michael Gaunt, specialising in varicose vein and thread vein treatments using Endovenous Laser (EVLA), ClariVein (MOCA), Ultrasound Foam Sclerotherapy (UGFS) and saline micro-injection sclerotherapy. with award winning patient satisfaction.

· Walk-in, walk-out minimally invasive procedures

· Individual tailored treatment plans

· Diagnostic ultrasound scan

· Post-operative care

· Multi award-winning research

· Celebrated patient satisfaction

Book your consultation> 

Private Secretaries:
Tel/Fax: 01223 305858


Cambridge Chariots of Fire Race 2023

The annual Chariots of Fire Race around the Cambridge colleges was postponed in September 2022 out of respect for the death of Her Majesty the Queen and has now been re-scheduled for Sunday 19th March 2023.

This great event raises money for local charities and we are looking forward to defending our title as 2021 winners of the Veterans’ Race.

It is a genuinely inclusive race, with competitors having a variety of running experience and fitness levels and Michael Gaunt is a firm advocator of regular exercise contributing to vascular health.

Do put 19th March 2023 in your diaries and come along and support this worthy event and cheer on our fabulous Michael Gaunt Limited team!