Is It Time to See a Vein Specialist?

If you are dealing with abnormal veins, you may be experiencing a variety of different symptoms that affect the quality of your life. Because these conditions tend to get worse over time, you may wonder how long you should wait before making an appointment with a vein specialist. Below is some information to help you understand vein conditions and decide if the time is right for you to make your first appointment. 

About Abnormal Veins

Abnormal veins usually develop when the valves that control blood flow in the veins stop working properly. When these valves don’t function correctly, blood can flow backward and/or pool in the vein. Abnormal veins fall into two basic categories: spider veins and varicose veins. While spider veins are small, web-like veins that are visible from the surface of the skin, varicose veins are much larger and more likely to be painful. Varicose veins may also be swollen and raised. 

Patients with spider veins may not experience any symptoms aside from the appearance of the veins under the skin. However, patients with varicose veins often report additional symptoms, such as tingling, cramping, burning, weakness, restlessness, numbness and general discomfort. 

Treating Abnormal Veins at Home

If you have noticed the symptoms of abnormal veins, you may begin by trying to treat the problem at home. Common at-home treatments for abnormal veins include compression stockings and elevation of the legs. If you are overweight, losing some weight may also alleviate some of your symptoms. 

If you have tried these at-home treatment methods with little success, or if you think your condition is too severe for at-home treatment, it may be time to make an appointment with a vein specialist. 

How Can a Vein Specialist Help?

Visiting an experienced vein doctor for abnormal vein treatment can help in a number of ways. First, the specialist will be able to examine your veins and diagnose them accurately. The doctor will also be able to determine whether you are a good candidate for the different types of vein treatments available from the clinic. At Columbus Vein Center, people with abnormal veins have access to the following procedures:

  • Sclerotherapy
  • Ambulatory phlebectomy
  • VNUS closure
  • Endovenous laser treatment

Each of these treatment options offers different advantages and disadvantages for patients. Vein specialists can tell you which of these options is most appropriate for you. To learn more about vein treatment, please make an appointment at Columbus Vein Center today. 

 

 

Benefits of Visiting a Vein Specialist

A vein specialist is a physician who has been trained to recognize and treat conditions affecting the veins. You may consider making an appointment with this type of doctor if you have noticed the symptoms of abnormal veins in your legs or other locations on your body. However, some people are hesitant to visit a specialist for the first time. To help you decide whether it’s time for you to make an appointment with a vein specialist, some of the benefits of visiting this type of doctor are detailed below.

1. Vein specialists are knowledgeable.

Vein specialists have spent many years learning about diseased veins and vein treatment in medical school and residency training. They can examine your veins and determine the cause of any symptoms you may be experiencing. A vein specialist can also tell you whether your abnormal veins can be treated.

2. Vein specialists are experienced.

Most vein specialists have significant experience diagnosing and treating conditions that affect the veins. They can use this experience to provide you with a more accurate diagnosis and a better treatment experience.

3. Vein specialists offer a variety of treatments.

Vein specialists offer a variety of treatment options to meet the needs of different types of patients with vein disease. Some of the treatment options that may be available from a vein specialist include VNUS Closure, endovenous laser treatment, sclerotherapy and ambulatory phlebectomy.

4. A vein specialist can help you decide which treatment option is best.

Each of these treatment options available from a vein doctor offers different advantages and disadvantages. Fortunately, vein specialists understand all of these issues and are able to help their patients choose the most appropriate treatment.

If you are interested in seeking treatment from a vein doctor, the first step is to make an appointment. Please contact the Columbus Vein Center today to begin the process of treating your abnormal veins.

How a Vein Specialist Treats Spider Veins

The appearance of spider veins creates distress in many patients.  Although these small red or blue blood vessels seldom cause medical problems, their cosmetic impact easily affects a person’s self-confidence.  A vein specialist can offer two types of treatment to eliminate spider veins once conservative measures such as making lifestyle changes or wearing compression stockings have failed to satisfy a patient.

How a Vein Specialist Uses Sclerotherapy

This treatment has been around since the 1930s, according to the Cleveland Clinic.  Fewer than 10 percent of patients who undergo the procedure experience no response to it.  In a single session, doctors estimate that they can get rid of as many as 80 percent of the veins they treat.  Sometimes providers combine sclerotherapy with ultrasound to map potential problem veins.

Sclerotherapy is normally an outpatient procedure performed at a vein clinic or a doctor’s office.  Specialists who perform it are typically interventional radiologists or vascular surgeons.  They consider the technique the gold standard of spider vein treatment.

Physicians eliminate targeted veins by using a fine needle to inject a special foam or liquid called a sclerosing agent.  This agent irritates the walls of the vein.  This causes the vessel’s walls to scar and the vein to close off and eventually fade from view.

Sclerotherapy is a minimally invasive procedure that causes little discomfort.  A typical session lasts 30 minutes or less.  Most patients return to their normal routines the same day as their appointments, except for activities the physician considers strenuous. 

Depending on their size, most spider veins vanish in a matter of several weeks to a few months.  Some might require more than one treatment for elimination. 

Laser Therapy for Spider Veins

For some patients, laser therapy is an effective treatment for a spider vein problem or for eliminating varicose veins up to 3 mm in diameter.  The Office on Women’s Health indicates that this procedure involves sending light bursts through the patient’s skin directly into a targeted vessel.

While this treatment utilizes no incisions or needles, the heat generated by the laser can cause pain, reduced somewhat by cooling.  Most patients require as many as five treatments, each lasting around 20 minutes, to eliminate spider veins in their legs before achieving sufficient fading and a satisfactory cosmetic result.  Unfortunately, doctors cannot safety treat all skin colors or types with laser technology. 

The path to eliminating spider veins begins with a visit to a vein doctor.  After taking a medical history and conducting a physical exam, the physician will explain the various treatment options for which the patient is a candidate.  The choice of therapy involves both the doctor’s recommendation and patient preference.

Because no treatment for spider veins can keep new vessels from developing, some patients return to a vein clinic periodically for additional treatments.

 

Choosing a Vein Specialist in Columbus, Ohio

Spider veins, varicose veins or other conditions related to vein disease; eventually, many people decided to resolve the problem and start looking for a vein specialist. The term vein specialist is a catch-all term that doesn’t have any formal meaning, so it can be hard for a patient to make a choice. In Columbus, Ohio, however, that choice should be Dr. Stephen Jung, of the Columbus Vein Center.

What’s a Vein Specialist?

All vein specialists are physicians, either medical doctors (MD) or doctors of osteopathy (DO). Both MDs and DOs attend medical school and complete a residency, and many also go on for specialty training. Vein specialists must have a license to practice medicine, and most are also board certified in their specialty. Vein specialists include vascular surgeons, cardiologists and radiologists. The surgeons, as one might expect, are more likely to deal with conditions where surgery is required, while cardiologists and interventional radiologists use other treatment methods.

Vein Doctors and Medical Specialties

Vascular surgeons train in general surgery first and them complete additional training in vascular surgery; some are also trained in heart surgery techniques. Cardiologists are trained first in internal medicine; cardiology is a separate specialty. Radiologists train first in basic radiology — the use of imaging techniques like X-rays and MRIs to diagnose and treat disease. Interventional radiology, like cardiology, is a sub-specialty. Interventional radiologists use imaging in combination with other techniques to treat problems like varicose and spider veins.

Making a Choice

The first step in choosing a vein specialist is to confirm training, licensure and board certification. Most physicians have these documents posted in their offices, or you can call the state medical board. The next issue is what kind of problem you have. For example, a varicose vein that has progressed to the venous ulcer stage may need surgical treatment. Technical competence is related to hands-on experience; ask the doctor how many procedures he or she has performed. The final issue is how well you and the doctor match in terms of personality. You should feel safe, confident of getting your questions answered and able to participate in decisions about your care.

Why Choose Columbus Vein Center?

Dr. Jung meets all of the basic qualifications you would expect in a vein specialist: medical degree from Ohio State University and interventional radiology training at Methodist Hospital of Indiana. Dr. Jung is certified by the merican Board of Radiology, with qualifications in both vascular and interventional radiology. He has more than 20 years of experience in his specialty. At our state-of-the-art facility, you’ll find high quality care in a warm and welcoming atmosphere. We’ll develop a treatment plan that fits your needs, and we offer extended hours to ensure our services are available when you need them. Contact the Columbus Vein Center today to schedule an appointment with Dr. Jung.

 

What to Expect on Your First Visit to a Vein Specialist

If you are experiencing symptoms of varicose veins, spider veins or another vein problem, you may schedule an appointment with a vein specialist. However, if this is your first appointment of this type, you are likely to feel anxious about the outcome. To help you prepare, here is some information about what you should expect at your first appointment with a vein specialist.

Physical Examination and History

One of the first things your vein doctor will do on your first visit to the clinic is perform a physical examination. He or she will look at your affected veins closely, so make sure that you wear loose fitting clothing. During this time, the doctor will also ask you questions about your medical history.  Be prepared to tell your doctor about the symptoms you are experiencing, when they began, what activities make them worse and what activities make them better. You should also tell your provider what measures you have taken, if any, to improve your condition and how well these measures worked. Examples of at-home treatments you may have used include elevating your legs, losing weight and wearing compression stockings.

Diagnosis

After reviewing your medical history and the results of your examination, your doctor will diagnose your condition. You may be diagnosed with spider veins, varicose veins or a combination. In some cases, if the doctor suspects other problems or conditions, further testing may be recommended.

Discussion of Treatment Options

Once you have received your diagnosis, your doctor will explain the various treatment options available to you. He or she may also make a recommendation at this time. Examples of treatments you may consider include:

  • Sclerotherapy – Sclerotherapy is a procedure that involves injecting a sclerosing solution into spider veins or varicose veins in order to force their collapse. This procedure may or may not be performed under ultrasound guidance.
  • Ambulatory Phlebectomy – For varicose veins found close to the surface of the skin, your doctor may recommend ambulatory phlebectomy. During this procedure, abnormal veins are removed from the body entirely with a small surgical hook.
  • VNUS Closure – During this procedure, the surgeon uses a catheter to deliver radiofrequency energy into the interior of abnormal veins.
  • EVLT – Endovenous laser treatment involves the application of laser energy to the vein’s walls, which leads to collapse and reabsorption.

If you think you may benefit from a consultation with a vein specialist, please call Columbus Vein Center today.

When to Seek Treatment from a Vein Specialist

Abnormal veins can be both unsightly and uncomfortable. Fortunately, if you suffer from abnormal veins, effective treatments are available. If you have already tried at-home conservative treatments with little or no success, it may be time to consult a vein specialist.

Abnormal Vein Basics

Two basic types of abnormal veins exist: varicose veins and spider veins. Varicose veins are large, swollen blood vessels that may be twisted and are often obvious even from a distance. Spider veins, on the other hand, are smaller veins that are easily visible through the skin and appear twisted. While varicose veins appear most commonly on the legs, spider veins may be found on the legs, face or chest.

Abnormal veins may cause multiple symptoms in addition to their unsightly appearance. Some of the most common symptoms patients report include:

  • Pain
  • Heaviness
  • Weakness
  • Tingling
  • Cramping
  • Throbbing

Certain risk factors may raise your chances of developing abnormal veins. Some of these risk factors include a history of blood clots, use of birth control pills, hormonal imbalances, heredity, obesity and certain occupations. However, it is possible to develop abnormal veins without any of these risk factors.

At-Home Treatment

If you suspect that you may have abnormal veins, you can try to deal with condition on your home using various at-home treatments. For example, you may be able to relieve the symptoms of your condition by elevating your legs and wearing compression stockings. You may also be able to reduce the severity of the condition by losing weight if your current weight is above normal. If you are currently taking birth control pills, discontinuing them may help as well. However, at-home treatments may not eliminate all symptoms of abnormal veins.

Visiting a Vein Clinic

If you have tried the at-home treatments listed above and you are continuing to experience problems with abnormal veins, it's time to make an appointment with a vein specialist. A vein specialist may be able to improve the condition of your veins with more aggressive treatments. Some of the treatment options available from vein specialists include:

  • Sclerotherapy – Sclerotherapy is a minimally-invasive procedure that treats spider veins through the injection of special medication.
  • Endovenous Laser Treatment – EVLT treats abnormal veins by administering laser energy directly into the vein, thus causing it to collapse.
  • VNUS Closure – VNUS closure utilizes radiofrequency energy to seal off affected veins. Eventually, they are reabsorbed into the body. 
  • Ambulatory Phlebectomy – For the largest varicose veins, ambulatory phlebectomy is often the best choice. This procedure involves the removal of abnormal veins through small incisions in the skin.

If you are dealing with varicose veins, treatment can help. Contact the Columbus Vein Center today to make an appointment with a vein specialist.

My Legs Feel Heavy. Should I See a Vein Specialist?

Feeling heaviness in the legs may be perfectly normal — or it could signal a significant medical problem in the making, such as vascular disease. Seeing your local vein specialist for leg heaviness is a good solution to protect your health. If your legs feel heavy after vigorous physical activity that is more strenuous than you are accustomed to, the leg heaviness you feel may be a perfectly normal reaction. For instance, helping a friend move to a new home or taking up a new sport can leave you with a bit of leg discomfort. That does not mean you should ignore the heavy feeling in your legs.

Leg Heaviness Can Signal a Need for Vein Treatment

If leg heaviness is becoming a regular, everyday occurrence or is sudden, but accompanied by severe pain or swelling, these are signals that you should seek medical care from Columbus vein doctors. The fact that you are researching the topic means that the heavy feeling in your lower legs is disturbing you. When this occurs, it is a good idea to investigate the issue at your local vein clinic. Some of the worst vein problems occur with few or no symptoms at all, such as a blood clot or DVT (deep vein thrombosis).

Serious Vascular Problems but May Give Little Advance Warning

Deep Vein Thrombosis (or DVT) is one of the more severe vascular conditions, where crucial blood flow is blocked by a blood clot in one of the large veins, typically in your thigh or lower leg. Unfortunately, DVT is under-diagnosed because it may develop gradually and because it occurs deep within the leg where it can go unnoticed without specialized testing. The condition may show minor symptoms (like a “heavy feeling” in one leg) that mimic other disorders. Even when DVT occurs very suddenly, some individuals may explain it away without seeing their vein doctor. Symptoms of DVT include:

  • Limb heaviness, tenderness or pain
  • Sudden swelling in one leg or arm
  • Throbbing in the leg or arm
  • Skin that is red, warm or feverish to the touch

When not discovered quickly enough, part of the DVT can break off and travel through your bloodstream to a lung, blocking a blood vessel there with potentially deadly consequences.

When heaviness in your legs worries you or attracts your attention, being proactive to protect your health is the best course of action. The vascular surgeons at your local vein clinic will typically recommend the least invasive treatment to restore your health and help prevent serious vascular problems in future. Please visit The Columbus Vein Center for varicose vein treatment, venous insufficiency management or vein disease diagnosis. Contact us at your local Columbus vein center today!