Am I a candidate for varicose vein treatment?
If you have pain, swelling, or heaviness
in your legs, ankles, or pelvis you may have varicose veins (venous
insufficiency). Typically, those with varicose veins also suffer from
pain while standing or walking for long periods of time. Venous
insufficiency is a disease and should be treated by professionals who
specialize in comprehensive varicose vein management, including
diagnosis and treatment.
How do you determine which veins to treat?
In addition to obtaining a detailed
medical history and physical examination, we perform a comprehensive
ultrasound evaluation that will help identify the sources of venous
disease. Because every patient’s venous anatomy and condition are
unique, we develop an individual, specialized treatment plan for each
patient we see. frequently asked questions
Are all varicose veins visible from the outside?
No. Varicose veins may be hidden from
your view. Just because you don’t see varicose veins, does not mean
that you don’t have them. Our diagnostic evaluation may indicate that
you are suffering from varicose veins, even when they are not visible.
Often, someone suffering from leg pain will visit their doctor, not
knowing they have varicose vein disease.
What is the difference between a good vein and a bad vein?
Veins contain one-way valves that allow
blood to return back to the heart. If those valves are faulty, blood
can travel in the opposite direction-away from the heart. This
condition, known as venous reflux, can result in painful swelling, skin
damage, blood clots and other complications.
Which procedures do you perform to address my varicose vein disease?
At The Vein Institute of Arizona, we
offer minimally invasive, advanced alternatives to traditional vein
stripping or ligation. These procedures allow us to treat the primary
source(s) of reflux, or the diseased vein(s) feeding your varicosities.
In many cases, a small tube (or catheter) is inserted into the diseased
vein which allows us to treat the vein using lasers and other
technologies. We also perform sclerotherapy and limited excision of
diseased veins depending on vein location and size.
How long does a procedure last?
Each procedure, completed under a
localized anesthetic, takes approximately one hour. Depending on your
unique situation, additional time may be spent at the office. After the
procedure(s), you are able to immediately resume most daily activity
with some limitations.
Is the procedure painful?
There is some minor discomfort which is
usually well tolerated. Local anesthetic is administered during the
procedure. Afterward, taking an over-the-counter anti-inflammatory
medication is usually all that is necessary for your comfort.
Will I need to limit my activity after
Unless the activity is vigorous, you
should not limit your activity after a procedure. Most recovery occurs
in the first week, but patients can generally resume normal daily
activity within hours of completing the procedure.
What happens to the blood flow that
normally goes through a vein that has been treated?
The blood flow from your varicose vein
is redirected into other healthy veins which readily compensate for the
veins that have been treated and closed.
Will treatments leave any scarring?
Minimal scarring may result from the
varicose vein treatments we perform. In some cases, the treated site
may have mild residual bronzing or slight discoloration. These changes
generally diminish with time.
Can all of my veins be treated in one
In most cases, it takes more than one
visit to treat your varicose veins. However, if only a single vein is
causing problems, only one treatment may be needed. We consider
follow-up evaluation to be a critical part of any patient’s care.
Could my pelvic pain be related to
Absolutely. Just as you may have
varicose veins in your legs, you could have them in your pelvis.
Several days before menstruation some women get throbbing pains in
their hips and legs-which is a common symptom of Pelvic Venous
Insufficiency. We can refer you to experts in chronic pelvic pain once
you have completed treatment.
Does pregnancy cause varicose veins?
Pregnancy can make a woman more
susceptible to developing varicose veins. During pregnancy, a
combination of vein compression in the pelvis and decreased smooth
muscle tone in the vein wall cause vein distension. Since smooth muscle
tone helps veins pump blood back to the heart, smooth muscle relaxation
can result in excessive blood pooling in leg veins, which contributes
to the development of varicose vein disease.
Should I wait until I finish having
children to have my veins repaired?
If varicose veins or pelvic venous
insufficiency make pregnancy (and life between pregnancies) unbearable,
treatment is available prior to subsequent pregnancies. You do not have
to wait until you are done bearing children.
Can you guarantee the results?
Due to genetics and many other factors,
you may be predisposed to future problems. In some cases we view our
services as “varicose vein management,” rather than a one-time “cure
all”. Since there is no way to definitively prevent additional veins
from becoming diseased, varicose veins may be an on-going challenge for
Does my insurance cover my procedures?
Most insurance companies will cover the
majority of procedures we offer. If there is a question about coverage,
our staff will determine if your insurance will approve the expenses.
If your insurance does not cover a procedure, payment options can be
arranged to meet your individual needs.