Although they have different etiologies, varicose veins and spider veins are both easily treatable in the hands of an experienced professional. Below are some of the differences between these unsightly and often uncomfortable conditions, as well as strategies for management. Physicians lacking experience in the latest advances will rely upon older, largely obsolete surgical approaches. It is important to keep this in mind when considering treatment, as surgeons comfortable in minimally invasive techniques such as endovenous laser therapy can offer this newer and far less painful approach.
What are Varicose Veins?
Veins returning blood flow from your legs have “valves” within them to prevent blood from falling back in the wrong direction: this is how you are able to have blood returning from your legs against the forces of gravity as we lead our busy lives. Just like other things in our body, as we age these valves oftentimes begin to fail. When these valves no longer work as well, these leg veins can become increasingly painful, prominent and unsightly, result in numbness, cause ulcers, and even make your legs tired on a day-to-day basis. As with other changes with age, this system may need to be evaluated by an experienced professional. The Elite Vein Center was founded around the principle that you should not have to simply accept these changes as a part of “normal aging.”
What are spider veins?
These may be smaller than varicose veins, and are named after their appearance resembling a spider web. These can be cosmetically unappealing, and oftentimes may worsen if untreated. Although smaller than varicose veins, they have the potential to develop into a condition including pain and numbness/tingling.
What are the available treatment options for varicose and spider veins?
A variety of treatments have been available for many decades, although the Elite Vein Center specializes in minimally invasive management options that deal directly with the problem. There is no reason for the same surgical treatments available 50 years ago to be the only options available today. There are many older professionals who have little experience with modern methods such as vascular laser therapy and are happy to perform older surgeries that may work but result in scarring and discomfort.
Wherever you pursue your care, make sure to ask the provider whether they have experience and comfort with newer techniques, as you may want to avoid someone who simply relies on outdated techniques because they do not know any other ways. Several methods that have been around for a while and are effective in certain situations range from wearing compression stockings (which may be effective but are often uncomfortable) to open vein stripping/open phlebectomy.
The surgeons at the Elite Vein Center are among the leaders of Vascular Laser Therapy in Southeast Michigan. This is among the most minimally invasive procedures available and is virtually pain free. Laser fibers are deployed directly into the veins, and once in position are fired, causing the offending vein to shrink. The surgeons at the Elite Vein Center have state of the art technology and incorporate ultrasound guidance, ensuring this procedure is safe and painless.