Causes & Risk Factors of Vein Disease

Vein Disease causes and risk factors

When most people think of vein disease, they think of varicose veins. However, there are many different types of vein disease, all with their own causes and risk factors. In this blog post, we will discuss the various causes and risk factors for vein disease. Keep in mind that not everyone who experiences one or more of these risk factors will develop vein disease, but it is important to be aware of them nonetheless. So, without further ado, let’s get started!

Causes of Vein Disease

Most people know about the dangers of vein disease, but many don’t know what causes it. Causes of vein disease include the following:

  • Smoking
  • Alcoholism
  • Obesity
  • The stagnant blood flow due to prolonged immobility
  • Pregnancy
  • High blood pressure in the family history

Who is at Risk for Vein Disease?

There are several risk factors that are known to increase your chances of developing vein disease, including:


Vein disease is more prevalent in people over the age of 50, but it can also become a problem for younger people who are obese or have jobs that require them to stand or walk on their feet all day.

Pregnancy & Childbirth

Vein disease is especially likely after one pregnancy and especially if you’re carrying multiples. The added weight of having multiple babies stretches your veins causing vein disease.  After birth, the return of menstruation may cause vein problems as well.

Family History

If your parents had vein issues, then there’s a good chance you will too. Genetics plays an important role in vein disease, so make sure you talk with your doctor about whether or not vein disease runs in your family.


Vein disease is more common in Caucasians, and most especially those of Northern European descent.


Vein disease can be caused by an unhealthy lifestyle which includes smoking, drinking too much alcohol, eating junk food, and never exercising. Smoking has been shown to actually damage the vein lining leading to vein problems such as vein disease. Those who drink too much alcohol also run a higher risk of vein disease because it thins out the blood and makes it harder for oxygenated blood to travel back up to the heart. Excess weight is another cause of vein disease.

Medical Conditions

Diabetes and high blood pressure can further complicate vein issues.

History of Previous Blood Clot

Those who have had previous blood clots are more likely to develop vein disease because vein disease can be caused by the same mechanical factors which cause blood clots. While clotting is necessary for survival veins can become damaged by clots leading to vein problems such as vein disease.

Genetic Predisposition

Those with close relatives who suffer from vein conditions are at much greater risk of developing vein problems themselves.

Asymmetrical Leg Veins

Those with vein disease in one leg but not the other are more likely to develop vein disease again in the untreated leg, particularly if it has similar vein problems or vein shape.


Being obese can lead to increased strain on veins and an increased risk of vein problems, especially in the legs. Weight loss can help treat vein issues.

Hormone Changes

Risk increases during pregnancy and shortly after giving birth due to hormonal changes in a woman’s body.


Certain professions put people at higher risk of developing vein diseases such as nurses whose job puts them on their feet all day long, runners who have poor blood flow from running, teachers who remain in an upright position all day, or anyone whose job requires them to be on their feet constantly.


Consult a Vascular Surgeon

Vein disease is a condition that affects many people. The cause and risk factors can be difficult to understand, but luckily we are here for you! We have all the information you need on our website or give us a call today to book your consultation with Dr. Lawrence Schmetterer.


On Key

Related Posts

Scroll to Top