Posts for tag: spider veins
Your vascular surgery team in St. Louis, Missouri can help with spider veins
Spider veins are a common problem as you get older. Vascular Surgeon Ayaz Malik, MD, FACS and Rachael Brewer, FNP-C at Vein Specialties in St. Louis, Missouri can help get rid of your spider veins for good.
These are a few of the common questions and answers about spider veins and spider vein treatments:
What causes spider veins?
Spider veins can be an inherited issue, as they tend to run in a family. Females get them twice as often as men. Women are also at higher risk of developing spider veins when dealing with hormonal changes, such as during pregnancy, menopause or while taking birth control pills. Sun exposure and obesity can increase your risk of getting spider veins. Also, being on your feet most of the can cause them to appear, so factory workers, nurses, teachers are more at risk of developing spider veins.
How are spider veins different from varicose veins?
Spider veins are thin red lines of abnormally dilated small blood vessels that run up and down your legs or face. These little vessels can twist around into a spider web pattern on your skin. Varicose veins are larger and thicker and are closer to the surface of your skin. Sometimes they appear dark blue and can look like they are bulging. Sometimes they look knotted because they are swollen and twisted. Varicose veins can appear anywhere on the body, but are most commonly found on legs and ankles.
Do spider veins hurt?
Although spider veins aren’t harmful, they can occasionally throb, itch, burn or ache. Sometimes they will cause the tissue around them to become irritated, resulting in discoloration and ulceration. Skin ulcers can appear at joint, like the ankles.
How do doctors treat spider veins?
The caring team at Vein Specialties offers a complimentary consultation for spider vein treatment. The first step in determining the right treatment options is by using 'trans-illumination' which is a light that penetrates the skin as well as ultrasound if needed to determine the cause of your spider veins. Typical treatment options include sclerotherapy or laser therapy.
Sclerotherapy involves the injection of Sodium Tetradecyl Sulphate (Sotradecol) or Polidochanol (Asclera) to reduce the appearance of spider veins. During treatment, your spider veins are injected with a solution that closes up the small veins. Your blood begins to redirect its flow to large, healthy veins, where it is supposed to be to begin with. As the blood flow to spider veins stops, the spider veins diminish and eventually disappear. You should expect about 3 -5 sessions with this treatment, typically a month apart.
For smaller veins, particularly in the face or ankles laser therapy may be used. In some instances, both sclerotherapy laser therapy may be needed.
These are just a few of the commonly asked questions and answers about spider veins and spider vein treatment. For more information about spider veins, varicose veins, and other vascular conditions, call Dr. Ayaz Malik and his team at Vein Specialties in St. Louis, Missouri today at (314) 993-8233. Or visit us online at www.veinspecialties.com.
Would you like to get rid of your unattractive spider veins? Dr. Norman Bein, a general, vascular and thoracic surgeon at Vein Specialties in St. Louis, MO, shares some information about the veins and discusses spider vein treatment options.
Why do I have spider veins?
Spider veins can develop due to a variety of reasons, including:
- Hormone level changes
- Exposure to the sun
- Standing for hours every day
- A family history of the veins
Spider veins develop when increased pressure in the veins cause them to dilate or widen. When that happens, the blue or red veins will be very noticeable just under your skin.
What can I do about spider veins?
Spider veins aren't usually harmful to your health but they can be unsightly. If you want to get rid of your spider veins before summer weather hits the St. Louis area, now is the time to consider treatment options.
Sclerotherapy, a popular treatment option, is every effective in eliminating the veins. During sclerotherapy, sodium tetradecyl sulphate is injected into your spider veins. The treatment gets rid of the veins by causing scarring that prevents blood from flowing through them. The blood that would normally travel through the spider veins is rerouted to nearby veins.
It usually takes three or more treatments to treat a spider vein, but once the vein stops carrying blood, it will no longer be noticeable. Sclerotherapy treatment usually isn't painful, although you might notice a little itching or swelling afterward. If the spider veins are in your leg, wearing compression stockings for 72 hours improves the effectiveness of the treatment because it prevents the sodium solution from flowing out of your veins.
Laser treatment is also a good option for spider veins, particularly those that form in the face. During laser therapy, a beam of light is aimed at your veins, damaging the walls. You may feel a little stinging or warming sensation when the laser penetrates your skin, but your skin will be cooled before and after treatment to minimize discomfort. After treatment, mild bruising, itching and swelling may occur.
Don't let spider veins detract from your appearance. Call Dr. Bein at Vein Specialties in St. Louis, MO, at (314) 993-8233 to schedule an appointment to discuss spider vein treatment options.
How long do the results of varicose vien treatment last?
QUESTION: I'm in my early 30's. My doctor said that my varicose vein will be a lifelong problem because it is inherited and genetic. If I get treated, how long can I expect the results to last? How often would I have to go in to get EVLT treatments?
ANSWER: Your doctor is correct that this is an inherited condition. There are really only 4 main veins (long and short saphenous veins in each leg) which are affected although there are some branches which can also be a problem. If you have symptomatic varicose veins caused by the reflux (pain, heaviness, aching, cramping, swelling, RLS etc) and have failed conservative therapy such as compression hose, anti-inflammatory pain meds, elevating, exercise, weight loss etc. you are a candidate for laser ablation. Not everyone has all of the veins causing problems and only veins leading to the symptoms should be treated. We often see people for second opinions who have been told they need to have 7 or 8 ablations and multiple injection treatments. It is very rare that a person has all of these veins fail and those that do are severely affected by them. if you have one saphenous vein causing your varicose veins directly, that would be the vein Dr. Bein would ablate first. You can always be evaluated later if symptoms start again in another area.
How can you tell if spider veings are a sign of venous reflux/insufficiency?
QUESTION: Aside from an ultrasound exam, are there any telltale signs that they could be something deeper? I have several spider veins on the outside of both thighs, and 3-4 on the back of my right knee. My mom has had spider veins since she was in high school, but I only noticed mine a couple months ago. I'm 28. I currently have no symptoms, but am terrified that it could be a sign of something more serious. I've read that they can also occur without venous reflux?
ANSWER: The spider veins on the outside of the thighs are very common in women. These are in the line of the lateral subdermic system and are easily treated with sclerotherapy (injections). It is rare to find them related to anything serious and are considered cosmetic. The few you have behind the knees are most likely from the same system. We evaluate all patients with spider veins to rule out deeper problems which will allay your anxiety. We use transillumination to see the "feeder" veins below the surface and treat these.
I have spider veins in my leg, but they are not painful, shoud I be concerned?
ANSWER: Do not be concerned. Spider veins are not a serious problem and mostly cosmetic. These can be treated safely with injection sclerotherapy and/or laser. Several treatments are usually needed, but this varies from person to person. The reason most people come to our clinic is for self-esteem - they are too embarrassed to wear short skirts, pants or swimsuits.
Can I get compression stockings over the counter from a pharmacise if I've been measured?
QUESTION: I suffer from varicose veins in my lower legs and also thighs. One leg is more swollen than the other, with the veins being quite prominent and painful. Do I need to get a referral from my general practitioner to be measured for compression stockings, or can I go into my local pharmacy to get measured for them and purchase them? My GP has mentioned that I may find them beneficial.
ANSWER: Firstly, I would recommend you be evaluated by a vascular trained surgeon including ultrasound to see if you have an underlying venous reflux problem (back flow in veins). He/she will be able to recommend the most appropriate strength and type of hose (thigh or calf length). Many clinics will dispense a higher grade of hose than the local pharmacy and this is important for comfort. We choose to carry Sigvaris. If the hose are not correctly measured or comfortable you will not wear them. Compression is important is establishing if the symptoms are alleviated somewhat prior to treating and for insurance coverage. Also, if there is reflux it means blood is not flowing correctly and this can cause superficial blood clots which are painful. Hose will keep the varicose veins compressed and improve the blood flow in the legs not to mention you will be more comfortable.
I have a large blue vein under my right eye that I'm finally ready to get rid of. I'm not sure if this requires a plastic surgeon or vascular surgeon.
ANSWER: Treatment of blue veins around the eyes is an advanced technique and should only be performed by experienced practitioners. They can be injected (sclerotherapy), removed (phlebectomy) or treated with laser. We mostly use a laser in our clinic with excellent results but in some cases use the other two modalities. We have undergone advanced training to do so and use the Cutera 1064 Yag laser.
No compression hose after small microphlebectomy
QUESTION: I have 2 small reticular veins that are varicose. My doctor is going to do a Microphlebectomy. He said due to the size it won't even be necessary to wear compression hose after. He also stated there is no chance of DVT. Does this sound accurate?
ANSWER: I am sure you will have a dressing on the area after the treatment for several days. If the areas is limited you may be ok without hose. While there is little or no risk of DVT from such a small and limited area, you will find this on your consent form which is routine for almost any procedure (including dental).
The veins in my legs hurt and swell so much during my menstrual cycle that it's hard to walk. What's going on?
QUESTION: I'm 26 and have 2 kids. The veins in my legs hurt and swell so much during my menstrual cycle that it's hard to walk. What's going on?
ANSWER: During menstrual cycles and pregnancy the veins dilate. Since you have had 2 pregnancies, it is possible that you have venous reflux causing swelling and pain. There are valves in the veins which carry the blood back to the heart for re-oxygenation and if they fail (usually an inherited condition made worse by pregnancy) the blood "pools" in the lower legs. I would recommend an evaluation including an ultrasound to see if this is the case. Either way, they can measure and fit you into a compression stocking (not your grandmother's stockings!!) to be worn a few days before and through your menstrual cycle. Taking Ibuprofen 200- 400 mgs several times a day will help reduce the inflammation and pain. Elevating your legs often will also help. If you have venous reflux, the treatment options are all minimally invasive, little or no down time (important if you have small kids) and covered by most insurance plans.
When you have spider veins, the last thing you want to do is wear clothing that reveals your legs. Luckily, dermatologists offer treatments that can minimize the appearance of the veins and help you feel more confident when you wear shorts or skirts. Dr. Norman Bein, your St. Louis, MO vascular surgeon at Vein Specialties, shares information about spider veins and treatment options.
What are spider veins?
Those wispy red or blue veins that appear just under your skin are caused by dilated blood vessels. They can develop when injuries, changing hormone levels or sun exposure cause an increase in the pressure in the veins close to your skin. You're also more likely to get them if you regularly stand for long periods of time.
How are spider veins treated in St. Louis?
Before your veins can be treated, your surgeon must make sure that they don't receive their blood supply from deeper feeder veins, called reticular veins. He uses a special light to illuminate your skin and identify feeder veins. If you do have feeder veins, you may need an ultrasound to determine the cause. The problem will need to be treated before your spider vein treatment can begin. Once your surgeon has performed a thorough examination and determined that you are a good candidate for treatment, he may suggest either of these treatments:
Sclerotherapy scars your spider veins, which makes them close up and disappear. When the veins close, blood flows through nearby veins instead. During sclerotherapy treatment, your doctor injects the veins with sodium tetradecyl sulfate. The treatment usually isn't painful and doesn't require any anesthesia. You will probably need three to five therapy sessions that are about three to five weeks apart. Itching and swelling can occur after treatment but can be minimized by wearing compressions stockings for three days.
Laser treatment is recommended for small surface veins and spider veins that appear on your face. When the laser light is aimed at your veins, the walls become damaged due to the heat the light generates. Eventually, the veins begin to fade away. You may experience temporary bruising, swelling and itching after laser therapy.
Would you like to get rid of your spider veins? Call Dr. Bein, your St. Louis, MO vascular surgeon at Vein Specialties, at (314) 993-8233 to schedule an appointment.
Even if you're not a medical professional, if you've developed thin, winding areas of discoloration on your legs, you probably recognize them as spider veins. This common cosmetic issue is seen daily at Vein Specialties in St. Louis. We've compiled information about spider veins and their treatment here.
What are spider veins?
When tiny blood vessels called capillaries, which are near the surface of the skin, become enlarged, the result is a cluster of thin blue, purple, or red-colored lines that resemble a spider's web. This is most likely to happen on the legs, particularly behind the knees. Although they are not typically dangerous to your health, many people don't like the way they look, which is why they choose to visist Vein Specialties in St. Louis for spider vein treatment. At this point, one of our medical staff members will assess your condition and suggest one of two treatment options: sclerotherapy or topical laser treatment.
What is sclerotherapy?
Using a tiny needle, one of our certified medical staff members will target the spider veins with a sclerosing solution, which acts as an irritant to the vein and causes it to shrink and gradually disappear. This is an FDA approved method of spider vein treatment, and our St. Louis medical staff is well-trained in administering it. After the treatment, your legs may be wrapped in compression tape. It can take over a month before the final results are visible. At that point, you and your St. Louis vein specialist will determine if you need another treatment.
What is a topical laser treatment?
Laser therapy at Vein Specialties in St. Louis involves targeting the spider veins using a laser that is programmed to focus on the coloration of the veins rather than the lighter-colored skin around it. The heat from the laser effectively destroys the veins, causing them to collapse in the same way as sclerotherapy. Your vein specialist in St. Louis usually recommends laser treatment for those who have mild spider veins; people with more advanced cases may respond better to sclerotherapy.
If you have spider veins and are ready to change your appearance for the better, contact Vein Specialties in St. Louis and set up a consultation today!