What Solutions Are There to Treat Your Varicose Veins?
If you have varicose veins, you’ll want to get them treated by one of the best vascular surgeons in Orlando, John D. Horowitz, MD, FACS. Dr. Horowitz is the founder and director of Central Florida Vein & Vascular Center. But perhaps you aren’t familiar with the various treatment options. In this post, we’ll take a look at the two main treatment modalities employed by Dr. Horowitz. And guess what? In most cases, these treatments are covered by medical insurance as varicose veins are a serious medical condition and not merely a cosmetic issue. But it must be said that your legs will definitely look better after going through any procedures at Central Florida Vein & Vascular Center.
Understanding Varicose Veins
It’s good to have a basic understanding of what varicose veins are their main symptoms. Varicose veins happen, usually in the legs, when veins that are just below the skin’s surface become swollen with pooled blood. The blood collects in the vein because the vein’s valve has ceased to function properly. Varicose veins typically have a blue, swollen, kinked, or twisted appearance.
Varicose veins can occur without other symptoms, but sometimes you may have any or all of the following:
- A dull achiness or soreness in the legs or ankles
- Swelling, pressure, or heaviness in the legs or ankles
- Skin changes, such as discoloring, hardening, or thickening, on the legs or ankles
- Skin ulcers on the legs or ankles
- Itchiness or a burning sensation near the damaged veins
And remember, varicose veins are not merely a cosmetic nuisance. Approximately 80 million Americans suffer from varicose veins, which can contribute to additional serious, and sometimes fatal, medical conditions such as blood clots, deep vein thrombosis, and other circulation problems. Varicose veins are different from spider, or superficial, veins, which generally are not serious but can be easily treated at Central Florida Vein & Vascular Center for cosmetic purposes.
Two Innovative Treatment Options
There are many ways to treat varicose veins. The oldest is vein stripping and ligation, a simple surgical procedure using a scalpel. The surgeon cuts into the skin, ties off (ligates) the vein with a surgical wire, and then removes (strips) the vein. This mostly outdated method is still preferred in certain rare situations, but it can be painful, have a longer recovery time, and the patient typically is under general anesthesia.
Today, vein experts like Dr. Horowitz prefer minimally-invasive procedures to achieve success without the need for surgery. Two main treatment modalities currently in use for eliminating varicose veins are laser ablation therapy and sclerotherapy. These innovative procedures are safe, effective and virtually pain-free. What’s more, they can be done on an outpatient basis right in the Central Florida Vein & Vascular Center offices under local anesthesia, and patients are able to quickly return to work or to their normal daily activities.
Ablation Therapy and EVLT
There are various ablation treatments that use lasers or radio waves to create a thermal (heat) reaction that seals off the varicose vein(s). The vein specialist makes a small incision in the skin near the vein to be treated in order to insert a small catheter into it. At the end of the catheter is a device that transfers the heat to seal off the vein.
Central Florida Vein & Vascular Center specializes in this type of treatment, offering an innovative procedure called endovenous laser treatment (EVLT). This type of ablation therapy uses a laser, as well as an ultrasound, to clearly visualize the veins. Patients experience minimal pain with EVLT, and they are able to go back to work immediately following the procedure, while returning to any strenuous activities the next day.
Sclerotherapy and UGS
Sclerotherapy involves the injection of a small amount of a liquid-sclerosing agent through a very fine needle into the varicose vein(s). This chemical causes the vein to scar and seal off, but, otherwise, has no effect on the patient.
Dr. Horowitz prefers to use ultrasound-guided foam sclerotherapy (UGS). With this technique, he uses an ultrasound machine to visualize the exact origin of the varicose veins and locate the optimal injection site. Veins typically respond within two or three treatments.
With both ablation therapy and sclerotherapy, the body harmlessly absorbs the sealed-off, formerly varicosed vein without any side effects. There is no scarring and no pain from the procedure, and patients usually are quite pleased with the superb long-term cosmetic results.
There is one other important thing to keep in mind, however. While these treatments can alleviate the symptoms of varicose veins, they are not a guarantee that new varicose veins won’t appear down the road.
An Experienced and Certified Specialist at a Dedicated Facility You Can Trust
Perhaps the most important point to make here is that you need an expert to diagnose and treat varicose veins. If you have lung problems, you see a pulmonologist. If you have eye disease, you see an ophthalmologist. Likewise, if you have venous concerns, you go to a vascular doctor like Dr. Horowitz.
The body’s vascular system truly is a specialty. Dr. Horowitz is a skilled and experienced vein specialist, so you can rest assured you will be under the best care, and your treatment will be safe and effective. Dr. Horowitz has specialty training, is board certified, and practices in a dedicated vein center. The last thing you want when dealing with vascular issues is a general practitioner, or someone who only occasionally practices vein care and is not an expert.
Central Florida Vein & Vascular Center is proud to deliver a professional, patient-centered experience. Our entire staff is very knowledgeable about the vascular system, venous disease, and the various treatments we provide.
You can trust that Dr. Horowitz, the best vascular surgeon in Orlando, and the rest of the staff at Central Florida Vein & Vascular Center have the knowledge and tools required to diagnose and treat you and your venous condition. So, call today to make an appointment at Central Florida Vein & Vascular Center at 407-545-3385 or 352-658-5547.