There’s no doubt that varicose veins are unattractive, but they’re much more than a cosmetic problem. Varicose veins represent an underlying vein disease that can cause serious health complications. At Northwest Houston Heart Center, experienced cardiologists A. Adnan Aslam, MD, FACC, FSCAI, and Roy Norman, DO, provide several effective treatments that eliminate varicose veins and treat the disease. To schedule an appointment, call the office in Tomball, Cypress, Magnolia, or The Woodlands, Texas, or use the online booking feature today.
Your leg veins work against gravity as they carry deoxygenated blood up the legs and toward your heart. Muscle contractions help push blood forward, but the veins rely on one-way valves to stop blood from going back down the leg.
If a valve weakens or stops functioning, some of the blood refluxes in the wrong direction. This condition, called venous insufficiency, causes varicose veins. As blood builds up, the vein becomes engorged and twisted. Before long, you have bulging, dark blue and purple varicose veins.
Varicose veins can cause significant discomfort. You may experience:
Venous insufficiency also causes high blood pressure in your lower leg veins. The increased pressure leads to an inflammatory skin disease, reddish-brown skin discoloration, thickened and painful skin, and a venous stasis ulcer.
These ulcers are dangerous because they don’t heal on their own. Without intensive wound care, they often cause skin and bone infections.
Northwest Houston Heart Center offers a comprehensive onsite program to diagnose and treat vein diseases, which typically starts with an evaluation by your doctor and performing a painless vascular ultrasound to determine the severity of your varicose veins. Depending on the size of the varicose veins and your symptoms, your provider may recommend one of several treatments. All of these treatments are offered onsite.
Compression socks generally starting with 15-20 mm of compression socks
Two of the curative treatments, sclerotherapy and endovenous ablation, are also performed by the providers and use different techniques but produce similar results after your initial evaluation. Your provider can recommend a specific treatment plan for each patient.
When you get sclerotherapy, your provider injects medication into the vein that makes the vein collapse.
Your provider makes a tiny cut around 2 millimeters in size and inserts a catheter into the vein. Using real-time ultrasound imaging, they advance the catheter to the area of diseased veins. As they withdraw the catheter, it sends out laser or radiofrequency energy, which heats the vein and makes the diseased vein walls and valves close.
In both procedures, the vein collapses/closes. After the vein closes, it gets absorbed by your body and blood gets rerouted to normal veins which are present adjacent to diseased veins. As a result, varicose veins disappear, there’s a restoration of normal circulation, and treatment is complete for venous insufficiency.
If sclerotherapy or endovenous ablation is not a good choice for your varicose veins, you may have a microphlebectomy. This technique is different because your provider physically removes the veins. They make tiny slits above the vein and use a specialized instrument to reach through the cut, grab the vein, and gently pull it out.
If you have varicose veins, you owe it to yourself to seek treatment that prevents complications. Call Northwest Houston Heart Center, or book an appointment online today.