Frequently Asked Questions
Information About Our Services
Do you have questions about the procedures, treatments or services that we offer?
Below is a list of some frequently asked questions, but please feel free to call our office if you need additional information. We are always pleased to assist you.
- How are diseased veins treated at Heart and Vein Center?
- I have large varicose veins. How should they be treated?
- How are spider veins treated? I’ve been told nothing can be done for them.
- What exactly is sclerotherapy? Is it Painful?
- What exactly is ultrasound guided sclerotherapy? Why is it so important?
- Can all abnormal veins be treated with sclerotherapy, ultrasound guided sclerotherapy and laser?
- Is sclerotherapy expensive?
- How many sclerotherapy treatments and/or laser treatments are necessary?
- What is the goal of sclerotherapy?
Heart and Vein Center is a full service, state of the art medical and laser facility offering advanced, out-patient treatment services for all types of varicose veins, leg spiders, facial veins and venous ulcers. We have our own complete diagnostic facilities, our own lasers, and our own in-office surgical suites in order to provide the latest treatment techniques available in the United States today at the lowest possible cost. We treat all types of venous disease by performing:
- Endovascular Laser Therapy (EVLT)
- Ultrasound guided sclerotherapy – large varicose veins and wide spread spiders
- Conventional sclerotherapy – small varicose veins and leg spiders
- Ambulatory phlebectomy for varicose veins
- Selected surgical procedures for spider masses and reticular veins
- Treatment for venous leg ulcers
- Compression Therapy
Happily, the days of surgical stripping for large varicose veins are all but gone. Rarely now must patients endure hospitalization, undergo general anesthesia, experience considerable pain or miss extended time from work or play because of surgery for varicose veins.
Now, because of advances in color-flow ultrasound imaging equipment and the development of newer and more versatile Laser and sclerotherapy techniques as practiced at Heart and Vein Center, physicians trained and skilled in performing Laser procedures (EVLT) and Ultrasound Guided Sclerotherapy can successfully treat all kind and size varicose veins right in their offices without surgery, without anesthesia, and with virtually no post-operative down time.
Virtually any type of spider vein on the legs can now be treated with sclerotherapy, laser, ultrasound guided sclerotherapy an often times, a combination of techniques depending upon the type and severity of the problem that exists. When patients come in for their initial consultation, they are advised on the best type of treatments for their own particular problem.
Sclerotherapy – whether performed as conventional sclerotherapy or the newer technique ultrasound guided sclerotherapy – is an office based, medical procedure which can permanently eliminate unsightly and uncomfortable varicose veins and spider veins. Sclerotherapy has been done for over 30 years and is well established as a safe and effective method for treating varicose veins and spiders. During a sclerotherapy treatment session, a physician trained to perform the procedure carefully injects a small amount of a special solution into the problem veins causing them to close and gradually disappear. Tiny needles are used for sclerotherapy so discomfort is usually minimal. Occasionally there is a small amount of discomfort from the injected sclerosing agent which quickly dissipates.
All diseased veins – from the largest of varicose veins to the tiniest of spiders – are caused by abnormal leakage of blood through faulty valves located inside veins deep beneath the surface of the skin. Over time, this abnormal leakage of blood, also called reflux causes veins visible on the skin surface to dilate and turn into diseased veins we call varicose veins and spiders. In order for sclerotherapy to be successful, the source of this venous reflux must be both identified by the treating doctor and injected or treated with sclerosing solution so the varicose vein caused by this leakage will disappear.
Often the source of reflux causing varicose veins and even spiders is much deeper than can be reached by injecting from the skin surface, and since conventional sclerotherapy is done right on the surface of the skin, regular sclerotherapy will not be effective in treating veins caused by such a source of reflux.
Now enter ultrasound guided sclerotherapy. Ultrasound can see below the surface of the skin!
If abnormal veins deep under the skin can be visualized with the ultrasound machine, then the doctor can successfully guide a needle directly into the source of reflux and satisfactorily treat that source with the result of complete disappearance of the varicose vein originating from that source. This is exactly what occurs during an ultrasound guided sclerotherapy session.
Occasionally, in some people, very large, muscular, high-pressure varicose veins cannot be treated successfully even by ultrasound guided sclerotherapy. In such cases, an in-office surgical procedure called an “ambulatory phlebectomy” may be performed.
Done under a new type of local anesthesia called Tumescent Anesthesia and performed completely in the doctor’s office, ambulatory phlebectomy can remove very large varicose veins through a series of tiny incisions no greater than two to three millimeters in length with the patient in complete comfort. No hospitalization is necessary for ambulatory phlebectomy, no general anesthesia is necessary, post operative pain is practically non-existent, and patients can go back to work the very next day.
Many people are surprised just how inexpensive sclerotherapy and laser treatment is, especially if they have had other cosmetic procedures performed. Your actual cost will depend upon the number of treatments required and what type(s) of treatment needed. An actual cost estimate will be presented to you at your first visit.
Regardless of the type of treatments needed, the number of treatment sessions varies depending upon the extent of vein disease, patient compliance with the post-treatment instructions and types of veins present. People usually have a mixture of diseased veins and each type of vein requires different treatment. Spider veins usually require three to five treatments, larger reticular veins more, and large varicose veins even more. Improvement will be noticed after every treatment and most people notice a fairly good degree of improvement after just three to four treatments.
As with all cosmetic procedures, we look for improvement… not perfection. With patience and good compliance, sclerotherapy and laser can effectively improve the appearance and health of your legs and leg circulation.