I have varicose veins. Do I need these to be treated?

I have varicose veins. Do I need these to be treated?

I have varicose veins. Do I need these to be treated?
 
Varicose veins are common and many individuals do not experience pain or discomfort with them. While cosmetically unsightly, no treatment is necessary if no other symptoms are present. If the appearance of legs causes discomfort, there are excellent treatment options.
Varicose veins can cause pain with standing, itching, skin irritation, leg swelling, pain in the end of the day, heaviness, brown spots and ulcers. When these symptoms are present, the treatment should be considered.

Sometimes varicose veins may cause complications. Blood clots can develop inside the veins. These clots produce pain, redness and tenderness to the touch and these symptoms can last two to four weeks. This is called superficial thrombophlebitis. It is not a major problem in most cases and will get better with minor or no specific care. Varicose veins can also bleed. This situation also requires treatment.

The decision to treat varicose veins with out symptoms is best addressed between the patient and the vascular surgeon on an individual basis.


Are stockings necessary to wear for varicose veins?
 
Varicose veins are basically a problem in the circulation. The blood cannot make its way back to the heart and is imprisoned in the legs. Compression stockings help the blood to circulate normally. They provide symptomatic relief. Wearing compression stockings will not cause the veins to disappear, but they certainly will help the swelling and the pain to get better. The appropriate stockings are best prescribed by the vascular surgeon.


Which is best treatment to remove varicose veins?

A single “best treatment” does not exist. The best treatment for one person may not be the most appropriate for other. The choice of the most adequate method is best made with your vascular surgeon once after a careful history of vein problems and an examination has been completely. The doctor will also have a venous Doppler ultrasound study of all the veins in your leg to allow for a better impression of your circulation. Recently, a marked technological evolution determined great improvement in the traditional techniques and permitted the development of new less-invasive techniques. These advances allow a faster recovery.

Leg spider veins, also called telangiectasias, are the smallest kind of varicose veins. Injection therapy (sclerotherapy) can be done in the office and provides good results, fast recovery and minimal discomfort. In most cases, more than one session is required. Another option is transdermic laser, which provides good results in very thin vessels.

Those bluish thicker veins are proper varicose veins. Mini-surgery with local anesthesia (ambulatory phlebectomy) is a less-invasive method that can remove the unsightly veins with discharge in the same day and fast recovery.

Varicose veins related to problems in the saphenous vein are best treated with surgery. Ultrasound can be used to help minimize the size and amount of incisions. It is possible to treat the saphenous vein with laser or radiofrequency.

In advanced cases and when surgery is not possible, foam sclerotherapy can be done. In this procedure, a foam-like medication is injected in the veins causing them to diminish. This method is less efficient than surgery and may cause brown skin spots.

In many situations, a combination of two or more methods improves the final outcome. The fundamental point is to choose a qualified vascular surgeon that masters all available methods.

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