Many people focus on the unattractive appearance of varicose veins, but they can be more than a cosmetic problem as you can also develop symptoms like painful, achy, and heavy legs and run the risk of serious complications like skin ulcers. Gary E. Lane, MD, FACS, at Pueblo Vein Center in Pueblo, Colorado, has extensive experience safely removing varicose veins with treatments like laser ablation and sclerotherapy. To learn more about eliminating varicose veins, call Pueblo Vein Center or book an appointment online today.
Your leg veins work against gravity to carry blood back to your heart. This job is done using one-way valves that open to let blood flow up, then close to stop it from going down. When a valve is weak or damaged, blood flows down and pools in the vein.
Over time, pressure from the accumulating blood causes other valves to fail, leading to ever-increasing pressure that weakens the vein walls and makes them bulge. This condition, called venous reflux or venous insufficiency, leads to the formation of varicose veins.
Factors that increase your risk for varicose veins include:
Varicose veins tend to be hereditary, so a family history increases your risk, as does a history of deep vein thrombosis (DVT) in your leg.
Varicose veins may not cause any symptoms. If they start to cause problems though, you’ll experience one or more of the following:
When they go untreated, varicose veins are associated with complications such as skin ulcers and chronic venous insufficiency.
Though many patients simply want to have their varicose veins eliminated, treatment often starts with conservative measures such as compression stockings to prevent blood from pooling, weight loss, and exercise. Most insurance companies require three to six months of conservative therapies before paying for a procedure to get rid of varicose veins.
When it’s time to remove your varicose veins, Dr. Lane offers options that are tailored to your needs, all performed in the office. After these procedures, the veins gradually disappear as your body absorbs the treated tissues. Your body also reroutes blood flow to other veins, so you don’t need to worry about circulation problems.
Dr. Lane performs endovenous laser ablation using a cutting-edge fiber-optic laser, the AngioDynamics VenaCure EVLT®. During this procedure, Dr. Lane gently guides the laser through your veins under ultrasound guidance to the targeted vein. When the laser is activated, it sends out heat that closes the vein.
Sclerotherapy consists of an injection of polidocanol, a medication that safely damages the vein, leading to scar tissue that your body eliminates. This is performed under ultrasound guidance to ensure accuracy and safety.
Varithena also uses polidocanol, but it’s delivered using a proprietary foam system. As the foam expands within the vein, it effectively eliminates the large-diameter veins that sclerotherapy can’t treat. Polidocanol safely damages the vein wall, causing scarring that’s gradually absorbed by your body.
During a microphlebectomy, also called an ambulatory phlebectomy, Dr. Lane makes several tiny incisions along the vein, then inserts a small hook, pulls the vein up, and removes it.
If you’re ready to do away with your varicose veins, call Pueblo Vein Center or book an appointment online today.