Varicose Vein Treatment

If you are suffering from varicose veins, getting treatment should be on the top of your list. Vein diseases not only create hideous abnormalities in the physical appearance of the skin but also become quite a burden to the individual suffering from it. Sure, having knotty and swollen veins protruding out from the skin in your legs is not exactly an eye-pleasing sight. But the issue is more than just skin deep. It is indicative of degenerating veins and heart trouble and can cause some serious pain to the patient. And as the condition will advance, this pain will move on to cause skin troubles, pigmentation and even ulcers in extreme cases.

When we talk about varicose vein treatments, you will be happy to know that the condition is very much manageable and a variety of varicose vein treatment options are available for a patient to choose depending upon the severity of the case.

Compression stockings

Wearing compression stockings all day is often the first approach to try before moving on to other treatments. They steadily squeeze your legs, helping veins and leg muscles move blood more efficiently. The amount of compression varies by type and brand.

You can buy compression stockings at most pharmacies and medical supply stores. Prescription-strength stockings also are available and are likely covered by insurance if your varicose veins are causing symptoms.

Some additional treatments are:

Sclerotherapy: This is a painless solution injection treatment that collapses the vein so that it can then be reabsorbed back into the bloodstream. Physicians generally recommend sclerotherapy for small to medium varicose veins. Types of sclerotherapy for varicose vein treatment include:

Laser-assisted — the least invasive and most advanced

Foam sclerotherapy — for larger, more difficult-to-treat veins

Ultrasound-guided sclerotherapy — for large, deep veins that once required surgical treatment

The advantage of sclerotherapy is that it can eliminate varicose veins with no pain or downtime. The disadvantage is that the technique may not work for larger, more extensive varicose veins. You may also have to go back for follow-up treatments in order for your veins to completely disappear.

Vein Stripping: This is a surgical procedure during which the surgeon makes small cuts near the damaged vein and removes the entire vein. Doctors sometimes do vein stripping together with other procedures, such as ablation.

Most physicians say that the main advantage of vein stripping is that it’s a permanent treatment because the affected vein is totally removed. But like any surgical procedure, it comes with some risks and requires more recovery time than less invasive methods of varicose vein treatment.

Vein Ligation– A piece of thread known as a suture is tied around the leaking blood vessel preventing the blood from leaking backward and swelling the vein.

Thermal ablation (also called radiofrequency ablation): “Thermal ablation, which has been around for about a decade, involves using a laser or radiofrequency energy to heat the inside of the veins. “This destroys the vein wall, the vein shrinks, and the body absorbs it over time.” Thermal ablation tends to work well as a varicose vein treatment, but it can cause a little bruising and discomfort for the first week or so on.

We use the Venefit™ radiofrequency ablation procedure at our Grand Junction office. We can discuss the pros and cons of all of our varicose vein treatments during your free vein screening.

Veins usually become less visible within one to two weeks. The procedure requires some local anesthesia, but most people have little pain after the procedure and can return to their normal activities the next day.

Varicose veins that develop during pregnancy generally improve without medical treatment within three to 12 months after delivery.

varicose veins causes
Varicose veins causes

After a brief introduction of Varicose Veins, let’s put some light on the Varicose Veins causes. After all one should have complete knowledge of everything about Varicose Veins.  

As you know varicose veins are usually caused by weak or damaged vein walls and valves also varicose veins may form whenever blood pressure increases inside your veins.

Inside your veins are tiny one-way valves that open to let the blood through, and then close to prevent it flowing backward.

Sometimes the walls of the veins become stretched and lose their elasticity, causing the valves to weaken and these weakening of Valves are the primary cause of Varicose Veins.

For the most part, having a varicose vein problem or spider veins is cosmetic. The unsightly bulges of veins that have lost circulation are more visually unappealing than medically concerning in most cases. However, for people who have these veins, they should seek medical attention before assuming that nothing else is wrong.

If the valves don’t function properly, this can cause the blood to leak and flow backward. If this happens, the blood collects in your veins, which become swollen and enlarged.

The reasons why the walls of the veins stretch and the valves in your veins weaken aren’t fully understood. Some people develop the condition for no obvious or apparent reason.

So what causes Varicose Veins? Specialists believe that inheritance is one of the reasons. If you have a history of varicose veins symptoms in your family than it is possible that you are going to get them too. Thus, heredity is a major player with varicose veins.

Secondly, pregnancy can also cause this condition of Varicose Veins. There is a lot more pressure on the legs from the weight of the baby, thus making the veins “wear out” more quickly as the blood pressure dilates the veins.

Thirdly, age causes your veins to become weaker and stretched out.

And last but not least it is the lifestyle. Prolonged sitting and/or standing on a regular basis can contribute to Varicose Veins. If you do have a career that forces you to sit or stand for long periods of time, try to change position every ten minutes to avoid problems. For instance, if you sit at a desk, you can flex your ankles and calves every few minutes to keeps blood flowing.

Besides other health problems, excess weight and obesity place more pressure on your legs. This can weaken your blood vessels, allowing blood to pool. Therefore, try to exercise and maintain a constant, healthy weight to keep your veins working smoothly.

A number of things can increase your likelihood of developing or causing varicose veins, including:

1. Being female
2. Having a close family member with varicose veins
3. Older age
4. Being overweight
5. Having a job that involves long periods of standing
6. Being pregnant

Less commonly, varicose veins are caused by such diseases as:

1. Phlebitis (inflammation of the veins),
2. Blood clots or any obstruction to blood flow in the veins, or
3. Congenital abnormalities of the veins.

varicose veins and dvt
Varicose veins and DVT (Deep Vein Thrombosis) can occur in severe cases of vein dysfunction.

Varicose veins and DVT can occur together if the varicose veins are severe enough. Usually, however, varicose veins affect the veins close to the surface of the skin. The vein specialists at Grand Junction Vein Center can help you assess your risk for deep vein thrombosis, a serious and sometimes life-threatening condition.

Varicose veins are enlarged, swollen, and twisting veins, often appearing blue or dark purple. They happen when faulty valves in the veins allow blood to flow in the wrong direction or to pool. More than 23 percent of all adults are thought to be affected by varicose veins.

While Deep Vein Thrombosis, or DVT, is a blood clot that forms in a vein deep in the body. Most deep vein clots occur in the lower leg or thigh. If the vein swells, the condition is called thrombophlebitis. A deep vein thrombosis can break loose and cause a serious problem in the lung, called a pulmonary embolism.

Any vein in the human body can be a ‘varicose vein’, but the most common occurrences are seen in those veins which are subjects to maximum stress and strain; like those in the legs and feet. Varicose veins are gnarled, enlarged veins (blood vessels) found close to your skin’s surface. They normally occur due to the increase in pressure on a particular vein which in turn twists them.

Before we try and understand the varicose veins, in particular, it is pertinent for us to understand the significance of veins and arteries in the human body. The veins and the arteries are the blood vessels, which carry around blood within the human body. As the heart continues to pump, it sends blood around the body through the arteries. The arteries keep branching into smaller vessels until the blood flows into capillaries. The walls of capillaries are only one cell thick, so that oxygen, glucose and other substances can pass through them to nourish the tissues. The waste materials of metabolism, such as carbon dioxide and lactic acid, filter in the opposite direction into the capillaries. A network of capillaries runs close to the cells in every part of the body, delivering nutrients while taking away waste products in the bloodstream.

Capillaries join to form veins. These smaller veins, in turn, combine together to form two major veins that return the blood to the heart. These are called the superior vena cava; which carries blood from the upper part of the body, and, the inferior vena cava; which carries blood from the legs, pelvis and the abdomen region.

The veins contain valves that are very important to their functioning. Valves are more important in the functioning of the veins in the lower part of the body as it pumps blood back to the heart and any malfunctioning can cause it to flow in the reverse direction. More often, a fault in these valves leads to a condition called varicose veins. The valves, which don’t allow the blood to flow in the reverse direction, are naturally designed to withstand pressure within the body.

Fortunately, for most people varicose veins are simple cosmetic conditions which can be treated through cosmetic surgery. However, for some, it is a very painful and discomforting condition. For them, a varicose vein might signal a more serious disorder in the circulatory system.

Call Grand Junction Vein Center today at 970-242-8346 for a free vein screening, especially if you are concerned that you might be at risk for deep vein thrombosis.

VenaSeal Treatment

Superglue treatment is a unique non-surgical treatment that uses a medical adhesive to safely and effectively treat varicose veins. Unlike other treatments, it does not require tumescent local anesthetic around the vein, so there are far fewer injections. The procedure also eliminates the use of heat (or thermal energy) so there is virtually no risk of nerve or skin injury. As the medical ‘superglue’ sets within a few minutes, there is not the prolonged healing process associated with ultrasound-guided foam sclerotherapy and medical stockings are not required afterward.

VenaSeal Procedure

A tiny catheter is positioned inside the unhealthy vein using ultrasound through a small puncture in the skin. Next, a small amount of adhesive is delivered inside the vein using a special dispenser to seal the vein which has been identified as being unhealthy and which is causing the varicose veins. After the treatment, blood then travels back to the heart in nearby healthy veins. The glued vein is then absorbed by the body’s natural healing processes.

VenaSeal Material

The adhesive that is used during the procedure is made with a medically approved type of Cyanoacrylate, which has a proven track record of over 50 years of use in the field of medicine. A unique formulation of the compound is also used which is specifically designed for the treatment of varicose veins.

Being such a new procedure, the superglue treatment does not have a procedure code and it is therefore not covered by private medical insurances. It can only be offered to those patients who are paying for themselves.

VenaSeal Patient Suitability

Patient suitability for superglue treatment will be determined after a full consultation and duplex ultrasound scan. After your assessment, the treatment will be discussed as well as more established alternatives such as VNUS Closure, endovenous laser (EVL) and Ultrasound Guided Foam Sclerotherapy.

The early results of international research do look very promising. However, because the superglue treatment for varicose veins is so new, there isn’t sufficiently long clinical follow up to confirm that it keeps the vein closed in the medium to long term in every case.

Superglue treatment for varicose veins reduces the number of local anesthetic injections significantly, but if additional procedures are needed such as phlebotomy, then additional injections may be needed.

Conclusion

Finally, as the superglue treatment for varicose veins is so new, the cost is higher than that of endovenous laser or VNUS Closure:

  • It is not a completely injection-free procedure.
  • That the results of long term follow up are not available as it is so new.
  • Private health insurance companies do not pay for this procedure.
AMA
CMS
ACOS
SAGES
AOA
Phlebology
GJV

Grand Junction Vein Center

2373 G Road #280
Grand Junction, Colorado. 81505
On the second floor of the Canyonview Medical Plaza
Tel: 970-242-VEIN (8346)