Varicose Veins

Varicose veins are large dilated veins just beneath the skin more commonly seen in the legs, calves, and ankles. Veins normally contain small valves that ensure forward flow of the blood as it returns to the heart. In varicose veins, these valves malfunction, resulting in backward flow and pooling of blood in the extremities. Over time these veins become weak and enlarge, resulting in dilated bulging veins beneath the skin (varicosities) and spider veins.

VIVA’s Interventional Radiologists and Vascular Surgeons are highly qualified and board certified vascular specialists. This offers patients greater assurances than many vein centers can provide.

Varicose veins can be treated with a variety of methods including endovascular laser ablation, radiofrequency ablation, injection sclerotherapy, as well as surgical techniques. The Interventional Radiologists and Vascular Surgeons at Virginia Interventional and Vascular Associates (VIVA) are highly trained and qualified to evaluate your specific needs and select the appropriate therapy. Our high level of expertise offers greater assurances than most other vein centers can provide.

VIVA’s most popular and state of the art vein treatments, EndoVenous Laser Treatment (EVLT®) and Radio Frequency Ablation (RFA) offer:

  • Treatments lasting less than an hour
  • 93 – 98% success rate
  • Immediate relief from symptoms
  • Rapid return to normal activities
  • Minimal to no scarring

VIVA’s most popular and state of the art vein treatments, EndoVenous Laser Treatment (EVLT®) and Radio Frequency Ablation (RFA) offer:
• Treatments lasting approximately an hour
• Rapid relief from symptoms
• Prompt return to normal activities
• Minimal to no scarring
• 93 – 98% success rate

Additional Resources and Sources::
Click Here to read more about varicose veins at sirweb.org
Click Here to read more about varicose veins at vascular web.org
Click here to learn more about laser procedures for varicose veins

Sources:
Society of Interventional Radiology
Society of Vascular Surgery
Virginia Interventional and Vascular Associates

VIVA’s most popular and state of the art vein treatments, EndoVenous Laser Treatment (EVLT®) and Radio Frequency Ablation (RFA) offer:
• Treatments lasting approximately an hour
• Rapid relief from symptoms
• Prompt return to normal activities
• Minimal to no scarring
• 93 – 98% success rate

VIVA offers the following services:

  • Consultation
  • Venous Insufficiency Ultrasound
  • Customized Treatment Plan
Why do I have to wear compression stockings?

The practice requires you to wear compression stockings following the procedure to ensure success of our treatment. Pre procedural compression stocking trial is more a necessity of our insurance company to assess if a conservative modality is helpful in alleviating your symptoms.

How long do I have to wear compression stocking?

You need to wear the compression stockings for 12 weeks prior to the procedure. We can still perform your ultrasound to assess for vein reflux while this 12 week trial is ongoing. We can also discuss a treatment plan however for treatments to begin we have to wait for this 12 week duration to be completed. You do not wear compression stockings 2-3 days prior to the ultrasound to help the technician see the vein reflux at its worse.

How long do these treatments take?

The duration of the treatment would depend on the number of veins being treated and can usually be from 45-60 minutes.

Can I drive myself to and from procedure?

This is a same day out patient procedure and most patients drive themselves to and from their procedure.

When can I start my work?

You can start your work the day after the procedure. Most patients are comfortable doing this and rarely some return to work following the procedure.

Do I have any activity restrictions?

We do not recommend swimming, water aerobic or other water based activities during the recovery period. We also do not recommend core work out and weight lifting above 5 pounds during the recovery period. Recovery period is usually 2 weeks. Walking and running are encouraged.

Do I have to wear compression stockings following the treatments?

Yes, you have to wear them for 2 weeks following the treatments.

What do I expect right after the procedure?

You would experience soreness at the site of treatment. This should be relieved usually with Tylenol and or Motrin. We will give you instructions on how to take them following your procedure. There may be some unpleasant temporary cosmetic changes such as bruising which could take up to several weeks to resolve. There may be hardening in the area of the treated vein due to the intentional clotting that we have created. This may take several weeks to completely resolve however the tenderness can be resolved with Motrin and Tylenol.

Are there any side effects to this procedure?

There are risks with this procedure like there are with any invasive procedure. These include infection. We rarely see this in our practice. We keep a watch for the symptoms of infection such as redness, tenderness, swelling or discharge from the treated area. We are able to treat these infections if they do occur with Antibiotics. Bleeding would be another risk and we would check to see if you are on any blood thinners. We would have you hold your blood thinners prior to our procedure to decrease the risk of bleeding. Also our incisions are less than a cm to a cm to chances for bleeding are rare.Deep vein thrombosis (DVT) is a very rare side effect. We check an ultrasound, 2 weeks following you procedure to assess if all the treated veins are appropriately occluded and this would also show us if there are any blood clots. We would treat the blood clots with blood thinners. We would also watch for symptoms of DVT during the recovery period including redness, tenderness and swelling. You would call our office and we would schedule an ultrasound earlier if required.

How many procedures will I require?

This will depend on your ultrasound results. We will meet with you following your ultrasound to discuss the findings and to develop a treatment plan.

What benefits can I expect from these procedures?

The symptoms you came to us with that are related to your varicose veins, such as leg heaviness, tiredness, edema, cramping etc. would be improved. There may not be a 100% improvement in the cosmetic appearance of the leg and that can be worked upon once the cause of these varicose veins is treated.