In order to keep the body working properly, blood has to work its way around to all parts. Blood coming from the lungs is rich in oxygen and having circulated around the body, it makes its way back to the heart. The way that the blood is passed upwards is through a system of one-way valves that opens to let it in and then immediately closes to stop it from coming out again.
The problems begin when the valves no longer work correctly. The blood can fall backwards rather than going forward. As there will already blood in the previous section, the vein will start to bulge and this is what is called a varicose vein. Once this has appeared you are likely to need to see a vein doctor. Due to the lack of muscle, veins nearer to the skin will suffer more then the deeper ones. It is likely that you are going to require varicose vein treatment.
Why people have varicose veins
There are a number of reasons that you will have a condition that will send you to the vein doctor. It could be that you are overweight, have been pregnant a number of times or need to stand on your feet a lot during the day. More serious reasons can be a tumor, and in some cases, severe constipation. Sitting can also be an issue as the blood is not moving as it should, although the idea that sitting cross legged causes them is an old wives’ tale. As you get older, the risk of requiring varicose vein treatment rises. Weakness from an injury can be a cause as can your gender.
If you are female, you are unfortunately more likely to suffer, and the same goes if you have a family history of needing varicose vein treatment. Spider veins can be confused for varicose veins, if you are not too sure about them. But, these abnormal leg veins will not develop in the same way. As the name suggests, they spread out and look like a spider’s web, and can be blue or red. There are treatments that can be carried out by a vein doctor and it will be sclerotherapy for the smaller veins while there are a few options including surgery on the larger ones.
Contact the vascular doctor if:
· The symptoms affect your day to day life or there are signs of ulceration. This could be a sign that it is actually stasis dermatitis. If left, there can be severe ulcers and infections suffered.
· The veins feel hot and are a clear red color. This can be a sign that there is a blood clot and then there is the risk of phlebitis.
· If a varicose vein bursts, the leg needs to be elevated as soon as possible and the vein doctor should look right away as this can be a dangerous condition.
Any bleeding that is long term or a lot of blood is being lost, means that a doctor should look at the veins.
Choosing the right varicose and spider vein treatment
It will have to be a joint decision between you and the vein doctor and a lot will have to be considered before the decision can be made. The things you will need to consider include:
- Your general fitness.
- How old you are
- The symptoms that have appeared so far.
- The results that the vein doctor things you may receive.
- Your wishes when it comes to the improvements – both medical and cosmetic.
- Any idea the doctor may have as to how things will progress.
It is important that a major discussion takes place between you and the medical staffs before any veins treatment is carried out. It will be the chance for the doctor to find out all they need to know about you and your medical history. It also gives you the chance to ask any questions you may have. It will help you both a lot when it comes to making the final decision.
There is bound to be the need for anesthesia with this varicose vein treatment as there would be pain felt, if you did not have this. It could be that it will just be a local anesthetic that is required and this will be enough to prevent you from feeling anything as it will numb the area where the doctor is working on. If it is felt that it is necessary, you may have to have a general anesthetic and this means that you will be asleep during the procedure and not aware of what is being done. After your initial visit with the vein doctor, there will be three options presented to you. They will be:
- Treatment to close-up the veins
- Treatment to take out the veins
Self-help vein cures
Firstly, it will be compression stockings bought over the counter and if there is not much improvement, it could be medically prescribed stockings. When wearing the stockings, the blood will be forced up and not allowed to fall as it will have been doing. They must be worn all day and while should feel snug, should not be too tight. If you get the chance, raise your legs for up to 15 minutes a few times a day. Ibrupofen will be good to start with and only stop when you notice a change in color or the pain becomes worse.
Techniques for closing the damaged veins
In most cases there is no need to remove the veins and it will be enough to just seal them. If the home methods did not work, then the next stage will be to seal them off meaning that they are no longer able to accept blood, and when this happens, the blood will find another way to get back to the heart. The vein will just wither and fade away with this varicose vein treatment. The way to close the veins includes:
Sclerotherapy – A solution will be injected into the vein and this will damage it. Once there is no longer any blood in it, it will be absorbed into the leg. The good news is that there is no need to go to hospital as it can be done in the office of a vascular specialist. It may not be completed on the first visit and it could be that there have to be 2 or 3 spread out over a few months. There is no need for anesthesia and there will be the mildest feeling as the needle goes in. Compression stockings will be provided and there could be a few side effects with spider vein treatment including: –
- There could be bruising left in the area that the needle was administered during this varicose vein treatment.
- Brown marks – This will happen when blood leaks out of the vein being sealed and seeps into the skin. Normally, this will not last for long and there are very few people who still have it after a year.
- Larger veins may develop lumps and there is no need to worry about them. The vein doctor can take them out, or sometimes they will disappear on their own.
- Swelling – This is going to be when it is a large vein that is treated. Compression stockings can deal with this.
- When the leg is not properly looked after, there can be a matting effect seen. Small joined blood vessels will be visible. There could be a years’ grace before this happens, but whenever it appears it can be dealt with via an injection.
- Ulcers – These do not often appear but can bring pain and leave a scar when they are healed.
- Other veins in the legs can be irritated by the vein doctor.
- Tissue damage – This will occur when the injection is made in the wrong place. The needle should not go into an artery.
- Phlebitis – This is a blood clot and will need to be treated. The main reasons why this may happen will be poor compression, the use of HRT, there had been a long journey before travel or you just have problems with blood clotting. When not treated it can lead to DVT and this is dangerous and should not be ignored.
Microsclerotherapy – This is very basically sclerotherapy for small veins.
Laser Therapy – High intensity light will be used to close the vein. There are no needles used so this is a non-invasive varicose vein treatment. This will normally be used as a spider vein treatment.
Radio Frequency Ablation – This is another varicose vein treatment where the veins are closed off and radio waves are used. This will require the area to be numbed but not to be put out. A thin tube will enter the leg via a small incision. The tube that had been put in will heat up and it is this heat that closes the vein. It is a procedure that is carried out on one day before you are able to go home. A compression bandage will be provided and must be worn.
Endoscopic Vein Treatment – A small camera will be sent through the vein and closes it. This will usually be carried out when the veins are likely to lead to venous ulcers. It should take just a few weeks to get back to normal.
Varicose vein removal treatment techniques
If removal is considered the best option, there are 2 ways that this can happen.
- Ambulatory phlebectomy – This is a varicose vein treatment carried out on veins close to the skin’s surface. A small cut will allow the vein to be removed and you can leave the same day.
- Ligation and vein stripping – This will be used when the veins are in a bad way. You will be put under anesthesia while this happens, and the leg will be cut to allow the vein doctor access to the veins. They will be tied off and taken out. As there may be the need for heart surgery at a later date, the saphenous vein will not be touched.
Is surgery necessary?
The first stages will be less invasive, but there will be times when surgery has to happen. It will normally be when there is a lot of pain, blood clots and issues with the skin. In some cases, it could be just for cosmetic reasons. You need to discuss medical conditions and medication being taken. An ultrasound test will also take place and you should say if you are pregnant.
After Varicose Vein Treatment
The doctor will bandage the leg and administer pain medication. You can walk right away and leave the hospital a few days later.
Varicose Vein Surgery Side Effects
These can include swelling, scarring – although these will fade – brown stains appearing on the skin as well as pain that may last a few days. The area around the calf muscle may swell and in some cases pins and needles may occur. If there is nerve damage, it could be permanent.
Varicose Vein Treatment Problems
Although a mainly safe surgery, there will always be some risks when going under the knife. There could be infection, blood clots or bruising. All can be dealt with through a vein doctor as long as you seek help early enough.
Choose a Great Doctor – Dr. Faisal Siddiqi, MD
Dr. Faisal Siddiqi is carrying out varicose vein treatment along with arrhythmia in New Jersey which is the state in which he was born.
Dr. Siddiqi carried out his medical residency in Yale New Haven Hospital before moving to the University of Maryland to study cardiology. While there, he became involved in cardiac electrophysiology and he was recognized as valuable by his peers. When he graduated, it was with competencies for nuclear cardiology, clinical cardiology and cardiac ultrasound.
He later attended New York Presbyterian Hospital and followed a two-year fellowship in clinical cardiac electrophysiology. He practiced electrophysical procedures that were minimally invasive. He took minimally invasive procedures a step further and moved onto venous disease.
Further training followed and this time it was with Dr. Michael Nguyen at the Vein Institute and Pain Centers of America. Now the Doctor works with phlebectomy, sclerotherapy, ERA (Venefit) as well as new treatments such as VenaSeal. Dr. Siddiqi is a methodical vein doctor and has a high standard when it comes to patient care. Each patient will have a specially designed plan that will be suitable just for their condition.