What Are Varicose Veins?
Varicose veins are enlarged veins that may be twisted and have an undesirable appearance. In some cases, they may signal cardiovascular problems. For many people, the emergence of some varicose veins is typical with age. If these veins become uncomfortable or unsightly, they may be removed with a wide range of treatments.
What Are the Causes of Varicose Veins?
Veins return blood to your heart during the normal process by which your heart pumps blood through the body. Veins in the legs must work very hard against gravity. Over time, it is possible that vein valves that make this possible will become weak or damaged.
These valves open during tiny muscle contractions that facilitate the process of blood flowing against gravity. They then close to prevent the blood from flowing backwards. If they do not close properly, then blood may pool in veins, causing them to twist or stretch.
Lifestyle factors have limited effect on varicose veins. Age and sex are the most predominant risk factors, with women being more likely than men to have problem veins. Pregnancy, obesity, and remaining in one position for a long period of time (standing or sitting) are other risk factors.
Treatment of Varicose Veins
Several forms of treatment are available for varicose veins and most treatment options are painless, low risk, and require little recovery.
Ways to Remove Varicose Veins Include
Sclerotherapy and Foam Sclerotherapy
The most common therapy for varicose veins is sclerotherapy, which consists of injecting small and mid-sized problem veins with a fluid that causes them to close up. This is typically a salt solution, but large veins may require a specialized foam mixture.
Laser treatment is extremely precise and effective. Lasers can eliminate problem veins quickly and do not require more than one treatment for a single vein, an advantage over sclerotherapy, which may require follow-up treatment. No needles or conventional tools are used.
A thin tube called a catheter is inserted into a problem vein in a variety of procedures. After the insertion, the tip of the catheter is heated using laser or radiofrequency energy. Heat causes the vein to collapse and self-seal as the catheter is removed from its position.
Ligation and Vein Stripping
In this procedure, a vein is tied off at a location before it joins a deep vein. The vein can then be removed through small incisions. Although this is usually an outpatient procedure, it may also require more recovery time. It also does not make blood flow less efficient.
Very small skin punctures can be used to terminate some varicose veins, depending on their size and location. This is an outpatient procedure that involves very light, localized numbing only to the area being treated. Scarring is usually minimal in this procedure.
Endoscopic Vein Surgery
Advanced cases in which leg ulcers have developed respond best to endoscopic leg surgery. A tiny video camera is inserted into the leg to recognize the exact location of varicose veins and then close them using precise incisions. It is performed on an outpatient basis.
If you have varicose veins and are looking for treatment options, contact Heart Vein NYC or call 212-226-8000. Our doctors can provide the best treatment option or you