Q. What is vein reflux?
A. This means that the blood in the leg veins is back-flowing – down towards your calf and feet – instead of flowing up towards your heart. This causes pressure in your veins which can lead to many uncomfortable symptoms and the appearance of varicose and spider veins.
Q. What are the symptoms of vein reflux?
A. Common symptoms of vein reflux are leg cramps, leg pain or aching, swelling, itching, skin discoloration, skin sores, restless legs, heaviness in legs, varicose veins and spider veins.
Q. Can vein reflux be treated?
A. The superficial veins under the skin can be treated successfully with a number of techniques.
Q. What causes vein conditions?
A. Vein conditions can be caused by a variety of things including: a family history of vein conditions, pregnancy, even standing or sitting all day can contribute to the symptoms.
Q. Will my vein condition go away?
A. We will be able to treat the veins that are causing the problems right away. Over time, people may develop new veins that cause symptoms, but we are able to those too with follow up / tune up appointments.
Q. What can compression stockings do for me?
A. For some patients, compression stockings can help alleviate symptoms, but they will not make the vein condition go away.
Q. What should I do if I have varicose veins during pregnancy?
A. It is recommended to wear thigh high compression stockings (if tolerated). Treatment of varicose veins should wait until after delivery of the baby.
Q. How do you diagnose vein reflux?
A. If you have bulging varicose veins or have leg symptoms, the diagnosis is made with a simple ultrasound of your legs completed by our team of specialists in our office.
Q. Do I have to go to another location for my ultrasound?
A. No. We make it very easy on our patients and all testing and ultrasounds are performed at Missouri Vein Care.
Q. How do you fix superficial vein reflux?
A. The superficial vein that is not working properly is “closed down” by inserting a tiny laser fiber into the vein. This is called endovenous laser closure. The laser causes the inside of the vein to close off. The circulation is then automatically re-routed to healthier veins so that your vein system begins to work more normally and symptoms are relieved.
Q. How serious is a vein condition?
A. Although vein reflux and varicose veins are medical conditions, they are rarely life threatening. Vein conditions are certainly life altering, since the symptoms can interfere with sleep, exercise, work and other daily activities.
Q. I don’t have varicose veins, so does that mean I don’t have a vein condition?
A. No. Varicose and spider veins are just two of the many symptoms of a vein condition. You may have restless legs, aching legs, swelling, itching, pain, heaviness, discoloration of skin, skin sores or cramping. A complete venous ultrasound can identify the vein problems at this stage. In fact, only 20% of people with a vein condition have any visible vein problems. The other 80% have vein issues that are under the skin.
Q. Can varicose veins lead to deep vein thrombosis (DVT)?
A. It is rare that varicose veins lead to a DVT, which is a serious medical condition in which a clot forms in the deep veins of the body, usually the legs. To complete your vein assessment, our vascular technology staff will complete a venous ultrasound to check for deep vein thrombosis as part of your complete evaluation.