If Compression Stockings Don’t Work On My Varicose Veins, What Then?

When dealing with new patients who have come to us seeking a reputable Hamilton Township vascular doctor, whenever possible we start by recommending conservative treatment. This form of treatment relies on diet, exercise, weight loss, lifestyle recommendations, and the use of medical-grade compression stockings to control adverse symptoms of varicose veins such as swollen legs and ankles and painfully swollen and sensitive veins. For patients who have early stages of vein disease, these conservative treatment options are often sufficient to reduce their symptoms and allow them to more easily “live with” their varicose veins. That’s why we try these options first.

But although compression stockings and conservative treatment may help to reduce the swelling and pain associated with varicose veins, they don’t eliminate the swollen veins themselves, or cure the disease that causes them. Plus, they do nothing to remove the unattractiveness of existing varicose veins. That’s why some patients, although they may feel some relief from conservative treatment, come to us and ask, “What’s next? What do I do if conservative treatment isn’t eliminating all my symptoms, or if I want more permanent relief?”

What’s next if conservative treatment isn’t providing all you hoped for?

Varicose veins are in most cases caused by a condition called chronic venous insufficiency (CVI), in which the tiny valves that keep blood flowing in the right direction (“upwards,” towards your heart and lungs) fail, and become “leaky.” This allows blood to flow backwards and pool in your veins. Sadly, once these valves have become broken, they can’t be fixed, either with drugs or surgery. The only way to permanently eliminate varicose veins is to remove them.

At our New Jersey vein center, we offer several alternatives for varicose vein removal. All are minimally-invasive, meaning that we don’t have to make deep incisions in the skin, and the treatments themselves are so gentle that they can often be performed without any need for anesthesia, and in the comfort of our offices. The technique most commonly used to remove spider veins and small varicose veins is called sclerotherapy. It involves inserting a tiny needle into the affected veins and then injecting a foam or liquid that causes the veins to close. When the treated veins collapse, they are automatically absorbed into nearby tissue and disappear from the surface of your skin, while healthier veins in the area take over the job of routing blood back to your heart.

Another option for permanent vein removal is radiofrequency ablation (also known as Venefit or VNUS Closure), in which high-frequency energy is used to seal the diseased veins so that they collapse and disappear. When treating varicose veins that are too large for these two procedures, your Hamilton Township vascular doctor may use a technique called microphlebectomy, in which the swollen veins are removed from the body through tiny micro-incisions.

How do you find out more about these treatment options?

Your first step should be to read through the Vein Treatments section of our website, where we provide more detailed information about each of these procedures. Or just pick up your phone and call our Hamilton Township vascular doctor at 609-528-6330 or go online to set up an appointment with Dr. Imtiaz Ahmad so he can answer any questions you may have in person.

Imtiaz Ahmad, MD

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