5 Treatment Options for Varicose Veins

Varicose veins are often unsightly enough to make sufferers feel quite self-conscious and can also cause discomfort, pressure, or pain. Varicose veins are regular veins that have become enlarged and twisted, resulting in a dramatic dark purple cord-like appearance that is often very noticeable. Luckily, a variety of treatment options are now available that effectively treat varicose veins for good. Here are five treatment options for varicose veins:

Lifestyle Changes

If your varicose veins are still mild and not painful or especially noticeable, lifestyle changes can stop them from getting worse and prevent future varicose veins. If your varicose veins are on the more severe side and you need one of the other treatment options on this list, lifestyle changes will still help complement the treatment you receive and make it more effective.

Varicose veins are often linked to lack of circulation due to sitting for long periods of time, so it's a good idea to make an effort to get up and move around at regular intervals if you work at a sedentary office job. Getting up to walk around is also important on long flights, as the altitude can contribute to varicose veins. Excess weight can also contribute to varicose veins, so making an effort to exercise more and watch your diet is also a great idea.

Compression Stockings

Compression stockings are a great option for anyone suffering from varicose veins because the pressure they apply to your legs helps ease pain and swelling and can keep your veins from becoming larger. In many cases, your varicose veins doctor will recommend that you wear compression stockings in addition to any medical treatments that you try.

Sclerotherapy Injections

Sclerotherapy is a procedure that entails the injection of a special chemical to essentially kill off the varicose veins. Most patients require a series of treatments spaced about a month apart, during which time your body heals by ridding itself of the vein. The end result is that the veins gradually fade away, and so do your symptoms.

Laser Treatment

Thanks to advances in laser technology, many varicose veins can now be removed with a simple laser procedure, similar to laser hair therapy. Like sclerotherapy, laser treatments are often performed in a series, though many patients notice visible results after just one laser treatment. Your doctor will most likely apply a numbing agent before your treatment to prevent discomfort, and in most cases, you will be able to resume normal activities immediately afterward.

Outpatient Vein Removal Surgery

In severe cases, where the other treatment options on this list are unlikely to be effective or have already been attempted to no avail, outpatient vein removal surgery may be needed. Since varicose veins are superficial veins that are not especially important to your circulatory system, they can be surgically removed without having negative effects on your leg circulation.

Some vein removal surgeries involve pulling the vein out via a series of tiny incisions, completely removing it from your body. This process is then repeated for each varicose vein. In especially severe cases of varicose veins, your doctor may decide to perform an endoscopic procedure, where a small camera is inserted into your veins, guiding your doctor as they tie off and eliminate the veins. In either case, your surgery will be minimally invasive and you will go home the same day.

Some of these treatment options can be used in conjunction with each other for the best results. To determine the best course of treatment for your varicose veins, it's best to start with a consultation and exam with an experienced varicose vein doctor.

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