Varicose veins are thick bulging veins that mostly form in legs. They are a sign that one has a venous reflux disease. A varicose vein doctor San Diego can evaluate your abnormal leg veins and offer you a suitable treatment plan. Mostly, treatment is provided to cure the underlying venous reflux disease and prevent it from causing serious complications. The best vein doctor SD will ask about your symptoms and do some tests to confirm that you have a venous reflux problem.
Edema in legs and ankles, cramping pain, itch, heaviness and fatigue are some of the earliest signs of varicose veins (varices or varicosities). By contacting a vein doctor San Diego the earliest possible, you can stop your early symptoms from producing much more painful complications. An untreated reflux disease keeps on worsening, causing more than just varicosities: venous ulcers, varicose eczema, lipodermatosclerosis, thrombophlebitis and more.
About venous reflux disease
When deoxygenated blood leaks through valves that don’t close fully and pools in veins, we say that one has a venous reflux disease. In a normal blood circulation process, blood that has no oxygen travels upward to the heart against the force of gravity. Pumped mostly by the action of the calf muscles, venous blood must pass through one-way valves located in the veins. When blood is being pushed up to the heart, the valves must open to let it pass and then close to stop it from flowing backward. If valves have an abnormality or injury, they will let some of the deoxygenated blood to leak and flow backwards into the vein.
At this point the refluxing problem that leads to the development of varicose veins begins. If you notice some weird symptoms in legs, consult the best vein doctor SD immediately. The real cause of venous reflux or venous insufficiency is damage to the veins or valves, of course. However, it is not always the case that people are born with impaired valves. Some of them develop a vein or a valve problem after suffering a serious injury or a blood clotting disorder. There are two kinds of reflux problems that every varicose vein doctor San Diego encounters on a regular basis. These are:
- Deep vein reflux – This kind is caused by DVT (deep vein thrombosis) and needs to be treated by the best vein doctor SD the soonest possible. When there is a blood clot in deep veins, the obstruction can cause damage to the valves. Then, deep vein reflux can result. If DVT isn’t treated the soonest possible, the clot can travel to the lungs and cause pulmonary thrombosis. This is can be life-threatening, explaining why you should know the symptoms of DVT beforehand. If you ever notice them, call a reliable varicose vein doctor San Diego
- Superficial vein reflux – This is triggered by the aging process due to inevitable vein weakening. As a result of having weak valves, superficial blood clots can form in the veins and interfere with the normal blood circulation process. The result is the superficial vein reflux, which is not as dangerous as DVT and can happen without symptoms. Sometimes it can cause spider veins or reticular veins. Even if you don’t see the best vein doctor SD, superficial blood clots cannot harm you. When pain is there, however, you should seek treatment.
What factors indicate venous reflux?
To know when to see a varicose vein doctor San Diego, be alert so you can note some of these symptoms:
- Swelling in legs – Also called edema, swelling in legs and ankles area is a big sign that you have circulation problems. Edema indicates that your veins have become totally full with blood and should be addressed by a good vein doctor San Diego.
- Varicose veins – These are the earliest signs that something is wrong with your leg veins. They are thick, bulging, twisty leg veins. They are close to the skin surface and can hurt so badly sometimes. Prior to these, some people develop the smaller version of these called spider veins. While these can go away without seeking the help of a varicose vein doctor San Diego, sometimes they can hurt a lot. Varicose veins require treatment because they are a sign that you have a progressing venous reflux disease. By having the best vein doctor SD evaluate them early enough, you can stay away from much more dangerous complications.
- Cramping pain – A venous reflux disease causes cramping pain in legs. This pain is sometimes accompanied by itch and sores.
- Reticular veins – Due to this disease, you can see reticular veins in legs. These are thin, red-colored veins that form at the surface of the skin. While these are not painful and hardly ever affect the victim’s health, they can be treated for cosmetic reasons.
- Venous stasis ulcers – These are very painful and hard to heal. They are open wounds or sores that attack the ankles area or the area right above it. Venous ulcers form where there are veins full of blood that fails to travel back to the heart. Due to the high pressure this blood triggers in veins, the skin can burst and create a venous ulcer. As a result of a compromised blood circulation, a venous ulcer continues to worsen even when treatment is being given.
- Varicose eczema – Also referred to as stasis eczema, venous eczema or gravitational eczema, this venous reflux disease complication is quite common. It forms when the disease is left untreated and affects the lower leg. It causes the leg skin to be itchy, dry, flaky, red and crusty. If you have noticed these signs, it is an indication that you need to see your varicose vein doctor San Diego
- Lipodermatosclerosis – In this case, the affected person’s lower leg begins to lose its fat and getting thinner, tighter, harder and red.
How is venous reflux diagnosed by a vein doctor San Diego?
Once you decide to seek help from a medical expert and arrange the first meeting, a diagnosis will be carried out. The varicose vein doctor San Diego will first ask about your health background and do a physical exam. If he or she notices changes in skin color, temperature or texture, it will mean that you have a problem that needs further investigation. In addition to swelling in legs and venous ulcers, the best vein doctor SD will examine your abnormal leg veins. Pulses along your blood circulatory system will tell your specialist whether ultrasound testing is necessary.
Doppler ultrasound is widely used as it is non-invasive and so effective. It tests the direction and velocity of blood via the leg veins. There is also a stronger test called Duplex ultrasound that uses the Doppler ultrasound and B-mode ultrasound to convey images of your veins. These pictures can give the doctor a clear view of your blood flow in the veins and show how your valves are functioning. If you indeed have venous insufficiency condition, the best vein doctor SD will start the treatment process.
Treatment options when you have a reflux problem
Whether you have a superficial vein reflux or a deep vein reflux, seeking proper treatment is so imperative. Besides receiving medical help from a qualified varicose vein doctor San Diego, you should also try some self-help tactics at home. These simple self-help tips include the following:
- While at your place of work, do your best to improve your posture. For instance, get up from your seat and walk around a bit to improve circulation in legs. Still when seated, move your ankle joint every few minutes to keep that area from swelling by the time you go home in the evening. If you work while standing, take short breaks every thirty minutes to reduce the strain in legs.
- When you get home from work, get into a habit of elevating your legs above the heart level. This is so recommended if you have noticed that your ankles and/or legs are swollen by the time you finish your daily activities. When swollen legs are elevated circulation improves, decreasing edema and inflammation.
- Exercise your body every day, if possible. Ever since I started walking every day I have noted that my spider veins are disappearing and new ones are not forming. So, find the time to walk as doing so will boost your blood circulation and remove some venous reflux symptoms. While exercising shouldn’t remove the best vein doctor SD from the equation, it is extremely essential. As you exercise you will lose weight and reduce the strain that is currently put on your leg veins. Whether you will choose to run in the mornings or walk to and from work every day, exercise is irreplaceable when you want to self-treat varicose veins and other symptoms.
- Wear compression stockings – Once you visit a varicose vein doctor San Diego, he or she will recommend wearing compression stockings. As each patient’s vein problem is unique, your vein doctor San Diego will select the most suitable medical-grade compression hose for you. Some stockings fit above the knee and others beneath the knee and all of them can help sustain venous blood flow and offer maximum circulatory benefits. If a venous reflux disease is severe, compression therapy plus medical cures will be recommended.
Medical treatment options
It could be that your varicose veins and other symptoms of chronic venous insufficiency are too severe and are not responding well to self-help techniques. There are a number of medical procedures that truly work. The kinds that will help you will differ from those that another person will respond to. Additionally, the best vein doctor SD will opt for non-invasive treatment techniques. These include:
- Sclerotherapy – This is a medical procedure that entails the use of a fine needle to inject a chemical substance directly into a vein. This substance is called a sclerosing agent and it tends to irritate the vein’s lining. As a result, the vein begins to swell while the blood starts to clot. Gradually, the vein becomes a scar tissue that eventually stops being visible. Sclerotherapy can be done by any varicose vein doctor San Diego with a good reputation, including Carly Guthrie. It is mainly picked for spider veins and some varicose veins (15millimeters in diameter). Besides hypertonic saline and sodium tetradecyl sulfate, doctors in the U.S use other solutions for sclerotherapy.
They even do foam sclerothrapy, which is thought to be more effective in terms of treating larger varicose veins. After receiving injections, the treated areas will be wrapped in bandages to create a compression force and make the vein walls collapse on each other and close. Alternatively, your varicose vein doctor San Diego may prescribe the best compression stockings for you. It is important to begin walking about to increase blood circulation and prevent the formation of blood clots. Receiving sclerotherapy treatment does not stop more abnormal leg veins from attacking an adjacent area and it may leave behind a dark stain where the shots were given–hyperpigmentation. Sclerotherapy is a safe procedure that rarely causes venous ulcers or blood clotting to form. If the best vein doctor SD recommends it, have it done without feeling afraid.
- Radiofrequency Ablation – In this technique, the vein doctor uses radio frequency energy to damage a vein and seal it for good. Done under local anesthesia to get rid of pain, RFA involves a small cut through which an ultrasound-guided catheter is placed to access the top of the vein and then apply heat. As the heat source is removed it destroys the entire vein, and this causes the blood that used to flow via this vein to move via a healthier vein.
- Endovenous Laser Ablation therapy – EVLT or EVLA is another technique of destroying a problematic leg vein. It is effective when treating spider veins and small varicose veins. The best vein doctor SD makes use of laser energy to destroy a varicose vein. It does not cause pain, although local anesthetic is given to reduce any level of discomfort.
Besides the above-mentioned non-invasive treatment techniques, serious venous reflux symptoms can be removed via surgery. This is called ligation and vein stripping surgery where a vein is tied off and then removed through tiny incisions made at the start of the procedure. The best vein doctor SD does not consider surgery until all the other simpler methods have failed to provide excellent results. Once refluxing veins are treated, your quality of life will definitely improve. However, you cannot prevent new varicose veins from appearing in future and seeing a varicose vein doctor San Diego yet again. Meanwhile, seek medical help from a great doctor like Dr. Billy Schoenfeld the soonest possible to stop your venous reflux disease from advancing and becoming harder to treat.