Up to 15 percent of women, generally between the ages of 20 and 50, have varicose veins in the pelvis, although not all experience symptoms. The pain is worse at the end of the day and after long periods of standing, and sufferers get relief when they lie down. The pain is worse during sexual intercourse and can also be worse just before the onset of the menstrual period. The condition can occur as a result of pregnancy.
The diagnosis is often missed during other physical exams because women lie down for a pelvic exam, relieving pressure from the ovarian veins, so they no longer bulge with blood as they do while standing.
Diagnosis at VIVA
The interventional radiologists at VIVA review any prior imaging studies that patients provide. If more imaging is needed, usually a CT Scan is performed on the abdomen or pelvis.
Treatment at VIVA
The treatment is relatively quick and can be performed in 45 to 90 minutes in our outpatient office.
Using a Venogram, the interventional radiologist takes an image of the suspected vein from the inside, checking its size and direction of blood flow. The interventional radiologist also checks for other conditions with similar symptoms that may require different treatments.
During the procedure, the varicose vein is closed with coils or foam, causing the blood to reroute to a normal vein. Using this technique, the varicose vein rarely reopens. Recover normally takes one to six weeks, although most patients notice improvement soon after the procedure.
VIVA offers the following services: