Varicose veins are enlarged blood vessels near the skin around the legs. These are not only unsightly, they are also quite painful. Sometimes they lead to carcinoma, blood clotting, dermatitis, skin ulcers, and acute fat necrosis. Women are twice as likely to experience this compared to men. Other risk factors include pregnancy, obesity, aging, leg injuries, menopause, and prolonged standing. Affected individuals should consult a doctor immediately to find the right varicose vein treatment for their situation. Below are some of the most popular medical interventions:
Minor cases may not require high level treatment. Doctors could recommend a number of lifestyle changes that they can do to reduce the appearance of varicose veins. For example, obese individuals may be asked to shift to a healthier diet to lose weight. Increasing physical activity in simple ways such as walking longer and more often every day can also do wonders without costing a lot of money. Promoting good skin hygiene is another common advice.
Different laser treatments are available for the removal of varicose veins. In endovenous laser treatment, doctors insert a thin laser fiber into the affected veins. Strong light pulses will trigger a collapse. There is virtually no scar and patients can go home right after the procedure. In some cases, the light pulses are applied from the outside so that heat destroys the problematic veins. This is a good option for people who don’t like needles or similar tools inserted into their veins. However, this can affect the skin with blisters, stains, and discoloration.
This is one of the oldest varicose vein treatments around. It requires the injection of a concentrated saline solution into the vein to hasten disappearance. It is a quick, simple, effective, and proven treatment that patients can get right away. The catch is that results are not immediate. You will have to wait between 3 to 6 weeks before the damaged veins disappear. Patience is necessary.
As for this treatment, doctors insert a small catheter into each affected vein. This transmits energy using radiofrequency waves which has enough power to heat up the vein’s wall and trigger a collapse. This seals the vein shut such that it no longer poses a problem. Patients may request local anesthesia to dull the pain. Like many of the treatment previously discussed, this can be performed on an outpatient basis. People can go to work soon after so there is not much downtime.
If the doctor deems it necessary, then surgery may be recommended. It is particularly effect in treating large abnormal veins. Different techniques exist. Some involve the tying of the varicose veins to prevent fluids from flowing through them. Other kinds of surgery call for the stripping of a lengthy vein segment to get rid of the problem. In ambulatory phlebectomy, big superficial veins are taken out using several small incisions. The good thing about this technique is that no stitches are required. Anesthesia may be given locally or at a higher dose depending on the situation.