You have varicose veins, now what? Once you see the vein doctors, you will see there are a number of varicose vein treatment options available, but how can you decide which one is right for you? The doctor will narrow it down to the best care plans for you based on your overall health and level of vascular disease. Understanding how each one works will help you make an informed decision.
This is a moderately invasive procedure done by vascular surgeons right in the office. The doctor will start by giving you a local anesthesia, so there is little to no pain. You may feel some minor cramping or pinching.
Next, the surgeon makes a number of tiny incisions. A hook is inserted into each incision to grab the diseased vein to remove it. Ambulatory microphlebectomy is done on large veins visible from the skin surface. It requires no recovery time, so you will be up and walking right after the procedure.
Ultrasound Guided Chemical Ablation
The deep veins cannot be removed via the ambulatory microphlebectomy, because the surgeon cannot see them with the naked eye. For these deeper problems, the vein clinic staff uses an ultrasound to locate the diseased vein. Once identified, the surgeon injects a chemical into the vein. This irritates the vein wall, causing it to collapse.
After the vein closes, your body will naturally reroute the blood flow. Over time, the vein disappears entirely. The staff will apply a pressure bandage to help seal the vein. You should be up and walking after the treatment and able to return to your daily activities soon.
Laser ablation allows the doctor to eliminate varicose veins using high technology. After giving you a local anesthetic, the surgeon will use ultrasound to guide a tiny laser fiber to the problem vein through an incision. The laser irritates the vein, causing it to close. The closed vein becomes obsolete and is absorbed within a few weeks.
The process takes less than an hour. You should rest for a day or two before returning to your regular activities. The doctor may prescribe compression stockings to aid in healing and to improve your leg circulation.
Sclerotherapy is usually reserved for small varicose and spider veins. The surgeon injects the veins with a sclerosing salt solution. The veins close and disappear over time. This treatment takes just minutes to complete and requires no recovery time.
It starts with an evaluation of your vascular health. The staff may opt to map out the vein network in your legs to locate problem areas. From there, you and the doctor can decide what treatment is the best choice for you.