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What causes varicose veins?

Your veins contain tiny valves that help ensure blood flows in the right direction. When those valves become damaged or weak, they no longer function the way they should, allowing blood to flow backward and “pool up,” resulting in bulging and discoloration as well as symptoms like pain, itching, heaviness or weakness in the affected area. Valve damage may occur as a result of age, weight gain, occupations that require prolonged periods of standing or sitting, pregnancy, genetics or other causes.

How are lasers used to treat varicose veins?

Laser treatment (also called endovenous laser treatment, or EVLT) uses a thin, flexible tube, or catheter, that's inserted into the vein. Once the catheter is in place, a laser fiber is inserted through the catheter to the area of damage. The fiber emits highly-focused laser energy to damage the vein lining, causing the vein to collapse or close and preventing the flow of blood through the diseased vessel. Instead, blood is automatically routed through health vessels for better circulation.

Is laser treatment safe?

Yes, lasers have been used for many years to safely and successfully treat varicose veins. The procedure is performed in the office in less than an hour, and there's no need for general anesthesia or stitching, which means far less risk of complications compared to many vein treatments, as well as faster recovery and less discomfort.

What is recovery like?

Once your treatment is over, you'll be encouraged to walk to maintain health circulation and promote the rerouting of blood through health veins. You may be given compression stockings to wear to speed recovery, and vigorous physical activity like gym workouts will be prohibited during the initial phase of healing to allow your vein to close properly.


What causes varicose veins?

Varicose veins develop when the tiny valves inside the veins stop working properly, enabling blood to “pool” and causing vessels to bulge. In addition to their unattractive appearance, varicose veins can cause symptoms like pain, itching and burning, as well as feelings of heaviness or weakness in the affected areas. Some varicose veins may also be a sign of a more serious underlying vascular disease, such as venous insufficiency, that can cause significant medical problems.

What is radiofrequency vein treatment?

Radiofrequency vein treatment, or RF vein treatment, is a technique that uses radiofrequency energy to heat up the inside walls of varicose veins, causing controlled damage to the vessel walls that cause the vessels to close. RF treatment is minimally invasive, using small puncture-like incisions into the varicose vein so a special RF device can be inserted. Once inside the vein, RF energy is directed at the vessel walls in precise locations needed to collapse the vein and cut off the flow of blood.

Is RF treatment safe?

Absolutely; the special RF device enables extremely precise administration of heat energy to destroy the vessel tissue without causing damage to healthy tissue.

How is RF varicose vein treatment performed?

Treatment is performed in the office using a local anesthetic to prevent discomfort. A tiny incision is made in the affected vein, and the radiofrequency catheter is gently inserted into the affected area. Once in the vessel, the device releases RF energy along the affected portion before being removed. A bandage will be placed over the incision, and you'll be able to walk around. After your procedure, you'll need to wear compression stockings during healing to help the vein close properly and speed recovery. During a follow-up appointment, ultrasound may be used to ensure the vein has closed.


What are spider veins?

Spider veins are tiny blood vessels – capillaries - that appear purplish, dark red or bluish and are visible through the surface of the skin. Although they may not bulge like their larger “cousins,” varicose veins, they still require prompt evaluation and treatment, not just for aesthetic reasons but to maintain overall vascular health and wellness as well. They derive their name from the “spider” or web-like appearance they cause.

What causes spider veins?

Spider veins develop when the capillaries stop functioning properly, resulting in a backflow and buildup of blood. Much weaker than healthy veins, spider veins often burst, resulting in bruising and stinging sensations. They can occur for man reasons, including age, genetics, prolonged periods of standing or sitting, weight gain, sun exposure, smoking, alcohol consumption and hormones.

What symptoms are associated with spider veins?

Aside from their unattractive appearance, spider veins often cause sensations like burning or itching which can become more pronounced after a long period of standing. Spider veins can also be an indication of a more serious underlying vascular condition that may have its own symptoms, including numbness or a sensation of coolness in the affected area.

How are spider veins treated?

Spider veins can be treated very safely and effectively using a technique called sclerotherapy. During sclerotherapy treatment, a special solution is injected into the affected vessels, irritating the inner lining of the vessel and causing it to close off to the flow of blood.

Is sclerotherapy safe?

Yes, sclerotherapy is considered the “gold standard” for the treatment of spider veins. It's been used for decades to help men and women get rid of veins and resolve symptoms.

What is recovery like?

After treatment, you may need to wear compression hose or special compression bandages to aid in healing. Most vessels disappear within a few weeks of treatment.


What is dialysis?

Dialysis is a procedure that helps filter your blood, ridding it of wastes and excess water. These functions are normally performed by the kidneys, but when the kidneys are damaged or diseased, they may not function the way they're supposed to. Dialysis is performed to take over the role of the kidneys. Dialysis uses needles – one in a vein and one in an arm – connected to a special machine that serves as the filter. Blood flows out of your artery and through the filtering device before being returned to your vein.

What is a vascular access?

A vascular access is a point where the dialysis lines enters the blood vessel. Because hemodialysis requires regular access to vessels, vascular access points must be established to make dialysis treatment easier and to prevent blood vessel collapse that can occur when vessels are repeatedly punctured.

What is an AV fistula?

An AV fistula is a type of vascular access technique that helps increase the size and strength of a blood vessel to provide easier and stronger access to the vessel. AV stands for arteriovenous, and it refers to a connection the doctor makes between an artery and a blood vessel that enables greater blood flow – and greater pressure – into a vein than would normally occur. These increases help promote stronger vessel development for more reliable and easier access to the vein and to prevent vessel collapse from occurring.

How is an AV fistula created?

The fistula is created during an outpatient procedure. Sometimes, ultrasound is performed to create a vein “map” that helps determine where the connection between an artery and vessel should be made. Local anesthesia is used to numb the area, and a small incision is made to enable the doctor to access the vessels and make the connection. Most fistulas take about two to three months to fully develop.


What is vascular disease?

Vascular diseases include all the diseases that have an effect on the structure or function of the blood vessels, including the veins and arteries. Some of the most common vascular diseases include:

  • Atherosclerosis (so-called hardening of the arteries), including coronary and carotid artery diseases
  • Varicose veins
  • Spider veins
  • Peripheral artery disease (PAD)
  • Aneurysm, a weak spot or bulging area of a vessel
  • Renal (kidney) artery disease
  • Clotting disorders
  • Lymphedema

What are the signs and symptoms of vascular disease?

Some types of vascular diseases may cause no symptoms until a serious event like a heart attack or stroke occurs; others like peripheral artery disease may cause symptoms like numbness or a feeling of cold in the areas served by the affected blood vessels. Some diseases may cause discomfort that can range from mild to significant. Because symptoms can be difficult to discern, having regular vascular testing is the best way to spot diseases in their earliest and most treatable stages.

Is there anything I can do to reduce my risks for vascular diseases?

Some diseases are inherited or genetic, but in other cases, the risk of developing vascular disease may be reduced with lifestyle changes, like quitting smoking, eating a diet low in saturated fats and high in fiber, losing weight and getting adequate exercise. Being screened for vascular diseases is also an important part of reducing your risks for serious events.

How is vascular disease treated?

That depends on the underlying cause. Some types of disease may be treated with medications like blood pressure medicines; others require surgery to correct, including minimally-invasive options using lasers, injections or very small incisions to treat vessel disease. In some cases, more advanced surgical techniques may be required to remove and replace an affected vessel with a blood vessel graft.


What are hemorrhoids?

Hemorrhoids are masses of swollen blood vessels that occur near the anus, developing as a result of increased pressure and strain on your rectum. Although they can affect anyone, they're more likely to occur in people who sit or stand for long periods of time and those who are very overweight or obese. They also occur frequently in pregnancy as the weight of the belly begins to press on the lower intestine and colon. Straining to have a bowel movement and having frequent constipation can also result in hemorrhoids.

What symptoms do hemorrhoids cause?

Hemorrhoids are most commonly associated with itching, burning or pain in the rectum, and they can also cause some bleeding, usually following a bowel movement. Some hemorrhoids may cause bleeding without significant discomfort. Large hemorrhoids may also make it uncomfortable to sit. The symptoms caused by hemorrhoid can range in severity from mild to severe.

How are hemorrhoids treated?

Traditionally, hemorrhoids have been treated using a banding technique where small elastic bands are placed around the hemorrhoid, cutting off blood flow and causing the tissue to drop off. But more recently, laser techniques have been developed and approved for the treatment of hemorrhoids, and studies have shown the laser technique can result in much less discomfort, improved quality of life and improved results compared to the banding technique. During this technique, a very small probe is used to administer a brief burst of light energy to the area just above the hemorrhoid where there are very few pain-sensitive nerve endings, causing the tissue to coagulate, or clump together, and cutting off blood flow to the affected area. The technique is simple, safe and can be performed in the office as an outpatient procedure.


What is vascular testing?

Vascular testing uses methods to assess and evaluate your blood vessels, looking for narrowed or weakened areas that could result in an increased risk for serious medical issues like stroke, heart attack or aneurysm.

How is vascular testing performed?

Vascular testing uses two primary techniques:

  • Measuring the blood pressure in your extremities – arms and legs – using blood pressure cuffs to identify discrepancies in pressures as well as areas of low blood pressure that could indicate a blockage in a vessel; and,
  • Ultrasound to see inside your blood vessels to assess the health of the vessels as well as to see how the blood is flowing.
Vascular testing is noninvasive, painless and is performed in the office on an outpatient basis.

What vessels can be tested?

Vascular testing can be used to assess circulation in man areas of the body. Some of the most common applications include:

  • Carotid artery ultrasound
  • Aortic abdominal aneurysm screening
  • Peripheral artery disease (APD)
  • Renal artery ultrasound
  • Vein mapping
Vascular testing can also be used to evaluate how well a graft is performing after a surgery such as coronary bypass.

What is an aneurysm?

An aneurysm is a weakened area in a vessel that can bulge out over time and in some cases may burst, causing shock and even death.

What symptoms do abdominal aneurysms cause?

Although abdominal aneurysms may cause pain and discomfort in the abdomen and chest, many aneurysms cause no symptoms at all until they finally burst, which is what makes screening so very important, especially in people who have ever smoked (even if you quit many years ago) and those with a family history of aneurysm.

How is an aneurysm treated?

Depending on the size and location, it may be monitored or it may need to be treated surgically.


What is a hernia?

A hernia is a weakened spot in muscular tissue that allows an organ or other tissue to protrude outside its normal area of containment. Most hernias occur in the abdomen, usually in the groin, when a weak spot in the abdominal wall allows a portion of the bowel or other tissue to protrude and bulge. These hernias are called inguinal hernias. Most hernias cause considerable pain and often appear as bulging areas. Without immediate treatment, serious medical conditions can develop. Hernias can occur for many reasons, most commonly as a result of lifting or moving heavy objects or even as a result of pregnancy. In most cases, weak areas of muscle are congenital, which means the weakness has existed since birth.

How are hernias treated?

Hernias require surgery to help strengthen the muscle wall to prevent organs and tissues from protruding through the weakened area. In most cases, surgery can be performed using minimally-invasive techniques that rely on very small incisions and are associated with faster healing, less discomfort and less scarring. During the procedure, small incisions are made near the hernia to enable a special instrument called a laparoscope to access the area. The laparoscope has a camera that transmits pictures of the area to a monitor for viewing. Repair is performed through these incisions using a mesh material that serves as a strong “patch” to strengthen the weak spot and prevent the hernia from recurring.

What is recovery like?

Once the procedure is complete, you'll go to a recovery area for a couple of hours for observation, then you'll be allowed to return home. You'll have some discomfort for a day or two that can be managed with pain medication. Most patients undergoing laparoscopic surgery can return to work within about a week.


What is the Excel V vascular laser system?

The Excel V is a laser system used to treat a wide variety of vascular-related issues, including conditions affecting both superficial and deep veins as well as benign pigmented lesions. The laser offers two wavelengths, enabling extremely precise adjustments for highly accurate and effective treatments and superior results.

What conditions can be treated with the Excel V system?

Because it's so versatile, the Excel V system can be used to treat an array of conditions, including:

  • rosacea
  • port wine stains
  • angiomas
  • facial veins
  • leg veins
  • spider veins (telangiectasias)
  • skin tags
  • scars, including acne scars
  • brown spots, age spots and pigmented lesions
  • freckles
  • warts
Plus, it can be used to treat wrinkles and fine lines as well.

How does the Excel V system work?

The Excel V laser system uses proprietary pulse technology designed to deliver consistent energy throughout treatment, so results are more predictable compared to other systems where pulse energy may vary. Plus, the unit's special cooling tip was developed to protect skin before, during and after each successive laser pulse so patient's stay comfortable throughout treatment and the risk of overheating or overcooling skin is minimized.

What is treatment like?

First, your skin will be carefully evaluated to determine the type of issue that requires treatment. The treatment zone will be carefully cleaned and the laser energy will be delivered using a handheld device that's passed over the surface of your skin. The pulsed energy will be adjusted for your skin type, as well as the condition that's being treated for maximum benefits. The length of your session will depend on the condition that's being treated, as well as the size of the treatment area. While many patients can achieve the results they're looking for with just a single treatment, others may require more than one treatment in order to achieve optimal results and maximum benefits.


Varithena improves vein apperance and 5 key varicose vein symptoms:

  • Heaviness
  • Achiness
  • Swelling
  • Throbbing
  • Ithcing

How does Varithena work?

  • The doctor administer a small amount of Varithena through a catheter or by direct injection into the malfunctioning vein.
  • The foam fills and treats the desired section of the vein.
  • The diseased vein collapses and the foam is deactivated.

How is blood flow affected?

When the malfunctioning vein collapses, blood flow shifts to healthier veins nearby.

How long does treatment take?

Ut usually takes the doctor less than an hour to administer Varithena.

How soon can I get back to my normal activities?

Patients may resume some activiities the same day as treatment. HEavy exercise should be avoided for one week. Post-treatment bandages need to be kept dry and in place for 48 hours, and compression stocking must be worn on treated leg for 2 weeks. For a month, patients should walk at least 10 minutes a day and avoid long periods of inactivity.

How many treatments might I need?

Some patients only need a single treatment. Additional treatment may be needed, depending on the number and size of veins to be treated.

Will my insurance cover treatment?

Insurance carriers may cover varicose vein treatment. Coverage may depend on the severity of the varicose vein and symptoms. Your doctor's office may be able to help you understand your coverage.

Want to lear more about Varithena?

To learn more about how Varithena can help please read this brochure.