Learn more about Chronic Venous Insufficiency in the 
Tri-Cities Area

The following represent the most commonly asked questions regarding the services provided at the Vein and Laser Center.

If you are not satisfied with these answers or your specific questions are not addressed here, please do not hesitate to send an email or call us at 989-790-9700.

Q: What services are provided at The Vein and Laser Center?
A: ClosureFast™, VenaCure™, ClariVein™, VenaSeal™ and Varithena™ are procedures offered for treatment of incompetent or refluxing saphenous veins (often the main cause of bulging veins and non-healing ulcers on the legs). Removal of bulging varicose veins under local anesthesia and through micro incisions Phlebectomy. Treatment of reticular and spider vein and reticular veins are performed using liquid or foam Sclerotherapy (injections). 
The advantages of these minimally invasive techniques:
  • No hospitalization
  • No general anesthesia
  • No incisions. Minimal to no scarring
  • Minimal discomfort and minimal down time
  • Walk in and walk out

Q: I have bulging veins on my legs. How can I get rid of them?
A: These veins are called varicose veins. They are often bulging and twisted. They can cause swelling, tenderness, heaviness, blood clots or bleeding. In mild cases, conservative treatment should include wearing compression hose and keeping legs elevated when resting. In more advanced cases, the cause of the problem may be managed by laser or radiofrequency saphenous vein closure and the varicose veins can be removed by minimally invasive surgical procedures, under local anesthesia. This is called phlebectomy. 

Q: I have clusters of ugly spider veins on my legs. Can they be removed?
A: Yes. Spider veins are often harmless, except for their unsightly appearance. Sometimes they can cause symptoms such as leg fatigue, localized pain and burning, etc. They can be treated with injection sclerotherapy or cutaneous laser or both. Each area of spider veins may require more than one or two sessions of treatment, usually one month apart.

Q: Are the treatments painful?
A: Most patients feel minimal to no pain while undergoing injection sclerotherapy or laser treatment. 

Q: What are my limitations after treatment?
A: Following varicose vein surgery, you will be asked to take it easy for a day or two, and keep your legs elevated every time you get a chance to sit down. You can walk, to the extent that you are comfortable. No standing in one place and no sitting with the legs hanging down for an extended period of time. You can shower as soon as the bandages are removed, usually within 2 - 3 days. Depending on the nature of your occupation, you may resume work anywhere between one day and two weeks after surgery. Following treatment, normal activity may be resumed immediately. Strenuous exercises are not advisable for a week or two.

Q: Do I have to wear elastic stockings after treatment?
A: Elastic stockings (also known as compression hose) are extremely important after varicose veins surgery, sclerotherapy or laser treatment, for faster healing and better cosmetic results. They are recommended for 2 - 3 weeks after surgery and 1 - 2 weeks after sclerotherapy or treatment.

Generally, people have a negative attitude towards compression stockings. In our experience, a majority of patients, after wearing these stockings for a little while, feel very comfortable with them because their legs feel so much better. A variety of styles are now made with consideration of their appearance and comfort.

Q: What happens to me if I do not treat my varicose veins?
A: There are long term consequences as the result of untreated varicose veins. The main problem with varicose veins is that blood pools in the leg and this will result in swelling, skin damage, inflammation, and finally ulceration. All of these are usually associated with pain, heaviness, fatigue, tenderness, itching, extremely sensitive skin, and occasionally blood clots. It is wrong to leave varicose veins untreated. 

Q: What is phlebitis?
A: Phlebitis means inflammation of the vein. Varicose veins are prone to developing inflammation, often as the result of minor trauma. When the vein is inflamed, it develops a blood clot and becomes hard, firm and extremely tender, and the overlying skin becomes red and swollen.

If the major deep veins of the leg develop phlebitis, the condition is called Deep Vein Thrombosis (DVT). In this condition there is a danger of blood clot moving to the heart and lungs. This is called pulmonary embolism.
Q: What is the difference between vein stripping and laser treatment or radiofrequency ablation?
A: For more than a hundred years, surgeons have been treating varicose veins by removing or stripping the main trunks of the superficial veins called saphenous veins. This requires general anesthesia in a hospital and several large incisions. Recovery is much longer and large, unsightly surgical scars are inevitable. 

With today's technological advances, it is not necessary to perform the so-called “stripping and ligation” of the varicose veins. We can simply close the saphenous vein from inside by use of thermal energy generated by a laser or radiofrequency device. This is performed under local anesthesia as an outpatient procedure and may not require a single incision. 

Q: What are the side effects of varicose veins or spider veins treatment?
A: The new surgical techniques of varicose veins treatment are usually well tolerated by the majority of patients, even by high risk patients with history of heart problems, diabetes, high blood pressure or elderly people for whom the risk of surgery in the hospital under general anesthesia is quite high. Our patients walk out of the office after one or two hours of surgery with minimal discomfort, and very little need for pain medication at home. Bruising at the site of surgery, and occasional mild swelling are not uncommon and disappear in a short time. Blood clots in the leg are extremely rare.

Following sclerotherapy (injection) treatment of spider veins, discoloration of the skin, usually a pale brown staining, is not uncommon and disappears after a few weeks or months. 

Q: What should I expect when I make an appointment with your office?
A: You will be received with the cordiality and respect you deserve. You will be personally examined by one of our physicians and our highly skilled and specialized nursing staff will attend to your needs and comfort. You will be provided with an abundance of medical information.

Your physician will personally explain to you the nature, extent and the condition of your veins and propose a plan of treatment. You will be given ample time to ask your questions. Our office manager will discuss all financial matters with you in private.

Q: How can I find out if my treatment is covered by my insurance?
A: After your initial consultation, with your consent, we shall send all the necessary information to your insurance company. This will include a complete report of your consultation, examination and diagnosis, and a copy of the ultrasound results and photographs of your varicose veins. 

A separate pre-determination form will be prepared, explaining your diagnosis and the type of treatment you require. We expect a response from your insurance company anywhere from a few days to a few weeks.

Q: Are the treatments expensive?
A: If the treatment is considered “medically necessary,” most insurance plans will cover all or part of the costs. Surgery is almost always covered by a majority of insurance plans.

Treatment of spider veins is usually considered a cosmetic procedure and is not covered by insurance. The treatments are relatively inexpensive when compared to other cosmetic procedures.

At the time of your initial consultation, you will be provided with an estimate of costs, along with available payment options.
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