Varicose veins are one of the many common side effects of getting older. While most visible signs of aging are simply cosmetic concerns, varicose veins can cause problems if left untreated. Leg swelling, pain, cramps, itching and fatigue are all common side effects of living with varicose veins. Obsolete vein procedures used to involve a painful process of removing the vein from the body entirely. Thankfully, new advancements allow for effective vein care that is safer, easier and more comfortable than ever before.
At Advanced Vein & Laser Centre, Dr. Richard Rosenfeld is proud to offer minimally invasive and effective vein ablation. Whether you want your varicose and spider veins eliminated for cosmetic reasons or because they affect your quality of life, Dr. Rosenfeld can help you address all of your concerns. With new advancements in the field of vein care, you can have smooth, youthful skin without having to go under the knife.
Understanding Varicose Veins
Varicose veins and their counterparts, spider veins, are the result of a common condition called venous insufficiency. Our veins play a pivotal role in the circulatory system by pumping deoxygenated blood back towards the heart where it can be replenished. In order to move blood up the legs and against gravity, the veins utilize a system of one-way valves that are designed to prevent blood from flowing in the wrong direction.
These one-way valves are crucial to keeping your blood flow strong and healthy. However, aging can weaken the valves, allowing blood to travel downwards and become trapped in the legs. Other factors, including living a sedentary lifestyle, being obese and staying on your feet for prolonged periods of time, can also contribute toward the development of venous insufficiency.
With blood unable to pass through the veins and travel back to the heart, the veins fill up and begin to protrude outward. The result is unsightly varicose veins that bulge and twist beneath the surface of the skin. While many people consider varicose veins to be only a cosmetic issue and accept them as a normal part of aging, leaving them untreated can lead to painful and dangerous skin conditions. They may also result in uncomfortable symptoms that can make your legs sore and make walking difficult.
Out with the Old
Vein stripping used to be a common procedure for eliminating problem veins. This procedure involved making incisions near the groin and the ankles to provide access to varicose veins in the legs. A plastic wire was then inserted through the incisions and tied to the insufficient vein. The doctor would pull the wire out one end of the leg, bringing the varicose vein with it.
Vein stripping was an effective process that eliminated the problem completely, but it resulted in up to four weeks of painful downtime. It was also a surgical procedure and was typically performed under general anesthesia, increasing the risks and potential complications. While vein stripping could help patients alleviate their symptoms and have smooth skin again, it came at the cost of a painful procedure and lengthy recovery that scared many patients away from seeking treatment.
In with the New
New advancements in vein care have resulted in two effective and minimally invasive treatments: endovenous laser ablation and endovenous chemical ablation. Both treatments are nonsurgical and require little to no downtime. Local anesthesia is commonly used, although some patients find chemical ablation to be comfortable enough without using anesthesia at all. Patients who undergo either treatment are also free to return home immediately following their appointments.
Both treatments operate on similar principles of eliminating varicose veins without physically removing the vein itself. Endovenous laser ablation employs heat delivered to the inside of the vein using a laser fiber that irritates and collapses the insufficient vein. Laser ablation is great for varicose veins that are visible and located close to the surface of the skin. Endovenous chemical ablation uses a chemical agent called sclerosant that causes vein walls to stick together, effectively sealing off the vein from blood flow. The sclerosant is injected using a very fine needle and can be led to deep, nonvisible veins under image guidance for safe and accurate treatment.
Once the varicose veins have been treated, the body safely redirects blood flow to healthier, deeper veins. The treated varicose veins are simply absorbed by the body, eliminating the unwanted blemishes and your uncomfortable symptoms.
Less Downtime, Less Pain
Following either type of vein ablation, patients can go home and resume most normal activities almost immediately. In fact, you can expect to even return to work and other obligations the very next day if you undergo a minimally invasive vein ablation treatment. Side effects are minimized using this very gentle approach, and many patients experience little to no disruption in their everyday lives.
Experience Modern Vein Treatment at Advanced Vein & Laser Centre
If you are bothered by the presence of bulging, painful varicose veins but have been hesitant to seek treatment, schedule a consultation at Advanced Vein & Laser Centre. Dr. Rosenfeld will guide you through the latest options in comprehensive vein care, explaining the procedures in detail and laying out a personalized treatment plan that is right for you. You should not have to choose between leg fatigue and painful vein stripping surgery. With endovenous chemical and laser ablation treatments, Dr. Rosenfeld can improve your quality of life in less than one hour.
Give Advanced Vein & Laser Centre a call today at 847-367-4040 to schedule your vein care appointment.