Swollen Veins In Hands: Treatment For Swelling Veins On Top Of Hands

There are veins all over the body. Veins carry deoxygenated blood back to the heart to receive oxygen before it goes to the arteries. There are many reasons why veins can swell and not just in the hands but also in the feet and other parts of the body. Although more of a cosmetic concern, it is still a concern that might need to be treated.

There are a variety of reasons that cause the veins in the hand to swell including:

  • Aging: Leads to the loss of elasticity and tautness of the skin as well as the vein walls.
    Aging can also cause the skin to thin making veins protrude and appear bigger.
  • Weight loss: Significant weight loss can make the veins look more prominent.
  • Vascular disease: Causes the veins to bulge such as with varicose veins.
  • Pregnancy: The hormone imbalance as well as rise of blood volume during pregnancy causes the veins to swell.
  • Phlebitis: A condition wherein the veins are inflamed and become swollen.
  • IV insertion or administration: Veins can swell after it has been cannulated with an IV and after drugs have passed through the vein walls.

Symptoms Of Bulging Veins in Hands

  • Bulging or swollen veins is the main symptom of this condition.
  • This condition may also be accompanied by other symptoms such as:
    • Diabetes symptoms
    • Obesity symptoms
    • Pregnancy symptoms
    • Thrombophlebitis symptoms

Treatment For Swollen Veins in Hands

Swollen veins, especially healthy veins, may not need treatment at all. Treatment of healthy but swollen veins is cosmetic in nature.

  • Sclerotherapy involves injecting a sclerosant into the prominent veins causing the walls to constrict, restricting blood flow and causing the vein to fade away.
  • Ambulatory phlebectomy involves making small incision to extract the veins using a phlebectomy hook.
  • Vein stripping involves tying the upper portion of the vein before it is removed.
  • Vein ligation involves tying the vein off, cutting off blood supply.
  • Endovenous laser ablataion – A minimally invasive procedure using a laser fiber which has to be inserted into the swollen vein. The laser produces heat causes the collapse of the vein and eventual fading of the vein.

If there is a presence of underlying medical conditions such as phlebitis, the condition has to be treated and the disease has to be stabilized in order to reduce the appearance of the bulging or swelling veins.


  1. Ann T said:

    I am 43 years old woman and I have swollen veins in my hand which are painful too. What are the home remedies that would be effective?

    August 20, 2014
    • PUP said:

      Swollen and painful vein can be varicose veins. It can also be due to superficial thromboplebitis.
      • Keep your hand elevated above the level of heart.
      • Can use prescribed elastic compressive bandage by your doctor. Take care that you do not compress it too tightly as it may obstruct the blood flow.
      • Use alternate wet and cold compresses to alleviate pain and swelling.
      • Take prescribed anti inflammatory medicines by your doctor.

      August 21, 2014
  2. AB said:

    For the past 6 months I am having severe pain in my left thumb each time I move it. It’s my vein that will be hooking? I can’t do anything with that thumb. What can be the cause and how do I treat it?

    January 14, 2015
    • PUP said:

      Thumb joint pain can be extremely debilitating condition. Thumb joint is extremely mobile joint as it has to participate in all the activities done by hand. It is difficult to grip an object when you have thumb pain. There are several causes of thumb pain. One of the most common causes is osteoarthritic changes at the base of thumb joint. Overuse is another major cause. Damage to tissues such as cartilage and ligaments surrounding the thumb joint can also lead to excruciating pain in thumb. The other causes include carpal tunnel syndrome and fracture of thumb bone. Treatment consists of:
      • Give rest to the affected thumb. Limit activities which involve thumb.
      • Applying splint to the thumb if there is injury to the ligaments. The healing may take 4 to 8 weeks.
      • Applying hot water fomentation.
      • Physical therapy under the guidance of a physiotherapist.
      • Local application of anti inflammatory cream.
      The pain is not due to vein, but because of the compression or damage to the nerve which is innervating the thumb. You have to consult an orthopedic surgeon. After clinical examination and X-ray findings he will be able to diagnose the exact cause.

      January 15, 2015
  3. SA said:

    Since one week the vein of my hand has become prominent, swollen and painful. It is more painful when I am working with the affected hand. What may be reason? How can I get relief?

    May 31, 2018
    • PUP said:

      There are several causes for swollen and painful vein. One of the reasons is varicose vein. However, it mainly affects leg veins, but in rare cases it can also affect the vein in hand. Another important reason is infection in hand. This can lead to swelling and painful vein. Your vein in hand can become swollen if you are doing strenuous physical exercise in gym. Hence the treatment will depend on the underlying cause. For example if pain and swelling of vein is due to infection in hand, it may require antibiotic and anti inflammatory medicines that are prescribed by your doctor. If strenuous exercise is the cause, reduce such activity for few weeks till the symptoms subside. Quit smoking if you have this habit.

      August 6, 2018

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