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Reasons to Seek Care from a Vascular Surgeon for Varicose Veins

Do you suspect that you have varicose veins? Through thorough research, you may find that they can be harmless. However, some people may want to

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Do you suspect that you have varicose veins? Through thorough research, you may find that they can be harmless. However, some people may want to get them removed for aesthetic purposes. If you would like to get them treated, then it is time for you to see a vascular surgeon!

What Is a Vascular Surgeon?

Vascular surgeons are medical doctors who specialize in diagnosing and treating conditions that affect the vascular system, which is the body’s network of blood vessels. This includes arteries, veins, and capillaries. Vascular surgeons are trained to diagnose and treat various conditions that affect the vascular system, including:

  • Atherosclerosis: A condition in which plaque builds up in the walls of the arteries, narrowing the vessel and reducing blood flow.
  • Peripheral artery disease (PAD): A condition in which plaque builds up in the arteries of the legs, reducing blood flow and causing pain and discomfort.
  • Varicose veins: Swollen, twisted veins that are visible under the skin, usually in the legs and ankles.
  • Aneurysms: A bulge or ballooning in the wall of an artery.
  • Deep vein thrombosis (DVT): A blood clot that forms in the deep veins of the body, usually in the legs.

What Diagnostic Tests Do Vascular Surgeons Use?

Doctors use several diagnostic tests to evaluate the vascular system and diagnose conditions that affect the blood vessels. Some standard vascular diagnostic tests include:

  • Angiography: This test involves injecting a contrast dye into the blood vessels and taking X-ray images to visualize the blood vessels and identify any blockages or abnormalities.
  • Duplex ultrasound: This test uses high-frequency sound waves to create a detailed image of the blood vessels. It can be used to evaluate blood flow and identify blockages or abnormalities in the blood vessels.
  • CT angiography: This test combines a CT scan with angiography to create detailed images of the blood vessels.
  • MR angiography: This test uses magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) to create detailed images of the blood vessels
  • Arterial blood pressure measurement: This test measures the blood pressure in the arteries to evaluate blood flow and detect any abnormalities.
  • Venous duplex ultrasound: This test uses ultrasound to evaluate the veins and identify any abnormalities or blockages.

Procedures for Varicose Vein Surgery

There are several types of surgery that vascular specialists use to treat varicose veins. These include:

  • Vein stripping and ligation: This is a surgical procedure in which the affected veins are removed through small incisions in the skin. The procedure is typically performed under general anaesthesia and may require a hospital stay.
  • Endovenous laser treatment (EVLT): This minimally invasive procedure uses laser energy to seal the affected veins and redirect blood flow to healthier veins, it typically does not require a hospital stay.
  • Radiofrequency ablation: This minimally invasive procedure uses radiofrequency energy to seal the affected veins and redirect blood flow to healthier veins. It typically does not require a hospital stay.
  • Sclerotherapy: This is a procedure in which a solution is injected into the affected veins to seal them and redirect blood flow to healthier veins. It typically does not require a hospital stay.

You should speak with a vascular surgeon or doctor to determine the best surgical option for your needs and medical history. 

When Should I Visit a Vascular Surgeon?

You should see a doctor when you are experiencing symptoms of varicose veins or any other kind of vascular disease. The most well-known symptoms of varicose veins include:

  • Visible, swollen veins: Varicose veins are often visible through the skin and may appear twisted and bulging. They are typically blue or purple in colour.
  • Aching or heavy feeling in the legs: Some people with varicose veins may feel a constant ache or heavy feeling in their legs.
  • Leg cramps: Some people with varicose veins may experience leg cramps, particularly at night.
  • Swelling: Varicose veins can cause swelling in the legs and ankles.
  • Skin changes: Some people with varicose veins may develop skin changes, such as dry, itchy skin or skin sores.

If you are experiencing any of these symptoms, it is crucial to speak with a doctor or a vein specialist to determine the cause and appropriate treatment.

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