Venous Disease FAQ

 

Find Answers to Your
Venous Disease Questions

 

 

 

What is venous insufficiency and how do I know if I have it?

Venous Insufficiency is abnormal venous blood flow back to the heart.  When the valves of the veins are not functioning well this can lead to vein dilation and symptoms such as pain, cramping, restless legs and swelling.  An ultrasound mapping will show which veins are and are not working properly.

 

Are varicose veins dangerous?

Varicose veins are not life threatening but symptoms usually worsen over time.  Several things which may affect the decision to pursue treatment may include severity of disease, severity of symptoms and other medical conditions that are present.

 

What are my treatment options?

Treatments Include:  Endovenous laser ablation, ultrasound-guided sclerotherapy, ambulatory phlebectomy, or a combination of the above.  After an ultrasound mapping is performed, a treatment plan will be determined according to your individual needs. 

 

Do the treatments hurt?

There is minimal discomfort during the procedure and post procedure there may be some aching and soreness in the treated areas.  If our patients require pain medicine they are instructed to take ibuprofen.

 

How long do the treatments take?

All of our treatments take less that an hour in our office suite.

 

What can I expect after treatment?

Our patients report minimal or no bruising or scarring after the procedure and we encourage them to resume normal activity as soon as possible.  We recommend ibuprofen post procedure and would restrict only heavy impact activity for the first few days (for example, running).  We also recommend wearing compression hose after the procedure.

 

What happens to the treated vein?

The vein essentially dies and is reabsorbed.  The body will recirculate the blood through healthy veins.

 

Are there any risks involved?

Our treatments are very low risk and most commonly include temporary numbness which resolves or mild bruising.  The benefits and risks will be reviewed with you if you decide to pursue treatment.  All benefits and risks will be reviewed with you along with your treatment plan.

 

What happens if I do not have my varicose veins treated?

Over time the high pressure in the veins can cause progressive edema and inflammation on which will worsen over time if left untreated.  Symptoms will likely worsen and may even lead to skin changes, blood clots or, if the disease is severe enough, non-healing leg ulcers.

 

Is there anything I can do to fix a diseased vein?

No exercise or medicine can reverse the disease that is already present but preventative measures may include compression hose and supplements.

 

Should I wait until I am done having children to have my veins treated?

Elevated hormones during pregnancy along with increased blood volume and an enlarged uterus all exacerbate underlying venous insufficiency and significantly worsen symptoms.  This can make leg discomfort and swelling extremely uncomfortable during pregnancy, and symptoms typically worsen with each successive pregnancy.  We recommend treatment before or between pregnancies.  We cannot treat you if you are pregnant and would recommend compression hose and leg elevation in this instance.

 

Will my varicose veins come back?

Unfortunately if you have a genetic predisposition for varicosities you may continue to grow new veins over time and require intermittent “touch-up” treatments.  However, endovenous laser has a 95% closure rate long term.  Ultrasound guided sclerotherapy is about 80% effective long term.

 

Do men get varicose veins?

Yes they do.  In the US alone, up to 25% of men and 40% of women suffer from this condition.