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Vein Physicians dedicated to studying and treating venous disease.

Varicose veins are large swollen veins that bulge under the skin and are typically blue or green in color.

An abnormal valve or a weakened vessel wall causes the bulging. In a normally functioning vein, the valve prevents blood flowing in the wrong direction back towards the foot. In a varicose vein, the valve is damaged and does not close properly. Varicose Veins

Spider veins are small-dilated veins near the surface of the skin and measure about 0.3 to 1.5 millimeters in size. They may be red, blue, purplish, or greenish in color.

The medical term for spider veins is telangiectasia. Spider veins can develop anywhere on the body, but are commonly found on the face and legs. There are larger superficial veins called reticular veins that may be the source of spider veins. Spider Veins

Facial veins are treated with different modalities depending on their size and location. The most common veins are small red veins on the cheeks and around the nose. Sometimes the veins around the nose are slightly larger and blue in color. These veins are similar to spider veins on the legs. Facial Veins

Hand veins are bulging veins on the backs of your hand. The reasons for bulging veins are many, but usually are related to a gradual increase in size of the veins over a period of years since the hands are below the heart level. Your doctor should make sure that there is no blockage in the veins in the shoulder area. Hand Veins

A venous ulcer is a sore on the lower leg and usually occurs just above the ankle. These ulcers may be large or small and occur because there is a breakdown of normal tissue. The reason this occurs is because there is a long history of high pressure in the veins in your legs.

Once an ulcer occurs, treatment needs to begin immediately. It is essential to reduce the pressure in the veins in the legs. Venous Ulcers


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Spider Vein treatment

Treatment options include sclerotherapy, laser, ohmic thermolysis, surgical techniques and intense pulsed light (IPL). Read more
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Varicose Vein treatment

The commonly used treatment options for veins include; compression therapy, thermal ablation, sclerotherapy, phlebectomy and high ligation and stripping. It is important to familiarize yourself with these treatment types and then discuss the best option with your doctor. Most experts in the field of venous disease consider thermal ablation to be the safest, simplest, and most effective treatment type in producing the best long-term results when treating GSV or SSV problems. Read more

Selected Glossary Terms

Laser (Light Amplification by Stimulated Emission of Radiation)
A laser is used to treat veins. The laser delivers a single wavelength of intense electromagnetic radiation (light energy) directly into the vein, causing intense heat that destroys the lining of the vein. The vein will eventually clot and scar down.
  -- 940-nm laser for treatment of saphenous insufficiency: histological analysis and long-term follow-up,

Ohmic Thermolysis - VeinGogh
A device using a small needle that transmits heat to cauterize small red spider veins.
  -- VeinGogh

Popliteal Vein
Refers to the main draining vein of the leg located behind the knee. The popliteal vein becomes the femoral vein in the lower thigh.

Reticular Dermis
The area under the squamous layer of skin where most spider veins are located 0.3 mm to 0.8 mm below the skin level.

Sclerotherapy
Sclerotherapy is the injection of a sclerosing solution into a vein that causes thrombosis of the vein and eventual resolution.
  -- Sclerotherapy of Spider Telangiectasia—Nursing Considerations

Venous Hypertension
The term used to describe the higher the normal pressure in the venous system. This is usually related to dysfunction of the venous valve or an old clot.

Frequently Asked Questions

I have had many spider vein treatments over the years and they keep coming back. Why does this happen?
There are many different reasons this can occur. It may be that the source of the problem (reticular veins) was not treated. This also could be due to your genetic makeup. Spider veins may also be due to hormonal changes. In our practice, we see some patients that form veins very easy no matter what treatment they have. Thankfully, most people just form a few new veins once in a while.
Can I be out in the sun during treatment??
Most of this depends on the treatment you are having done. If your doctor is doing intense pulse light (IPL) or laser therapy you should avoid sun exposure. This is because the sun produces a lot of melanin in your skin and competes with the laser and IPL wavelength. If this occurs, you may develop blisters or skin pigment problems. Even if you are doing only sclerotherapy, sun exposure can cause some darkening of the area treated.
Air Travel Before & After Procedures
For a thermal ablation of the saphenous vein, we scan the patient 2-days post procedure and are free to fly under a 4-hour trip. For longer trips, we recommend at least a week. There really is no hard data to say how long the time should be. For a phlebectomy (removing superficial veins), you can fly the next day. For foam sclerotherapy, long trips should be avoided for a week unless you can get up and move frequently. We recommend wearing compression stockings and doing calf muscle pumps (moving foot up & down frequently).
How long will I need to take off from work for a thermal ablation?
One to two days off is generally all that is needed. A majority of patients have minimal discomfort after the procedure. Most patients resume normal activities within one week.

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