It is estimated that one-third of all women will experience chronic pelvic pain in their lifetime. Recent advancements show the pain may be due to hard-to-detect varicose veins in the pelvis, known as pelvic congestion syndrome.
Pelvic congestion syndrome is similar to varicose veins in the legs. In both cases,the valves in veins that help return blood to the heart against gravity become weakened and don't close properly. In the pelvis, varicose veins can cause pain and affect the uterus, ovaries and vulva. Up to 15 percent of women, usually between the ages of 20 and 50, have varicose veins in the pelvis, but not all experience symptoms.