Posts Tagged ‘varicose vein treatment’

Takeaways: Varicose Vein Live Chat

vv-chat-emailOn Tuesday, June 14 many joined vascular surgeon, Dr. Mark Rheudasil as he discussed varicose vein pain prevention, non-surgical vs. surgical treatment options, differences between varicose and spider veins, and more. During this interactive web chat, participants were able to ask questions and get real-time answers from our Emory Healthcare professional.

Thanks to such a great turnout, we were able to answer quite a few questions that were submitted both prior to and during the chat. Below are some highlights from the live chat. View the full chat transcript here.

Question: Can you give a quick explanation of varicose veins? What causes them and what can I do if I am not wanting to have surgery?

Dr. Rheudasil: Most large varicose veins are caused by incompetent valves in the veins of the legs. Treatment though now rarely requires surgery. Most veins are treated with minor procedures done in the office.

Question: What are the possible treatments for varicose veins?

Dr. Rheudasil: Good question! The way you treat varicose veins is to get rid of them, and that can involve closing them with solutions that we inject into the vein or with heat or on occasion removing the vein through small incisions.

Question: How do I know if my varicose veins are bad enough to need treatment?

Dr. Rheudasil: Treatment for varicose veins is usually performed to relieve symptoms. Some people with small varicose veins so seek treatment for cosmetic reasons. If varicose veins are bothering a patient, it could be time to consider treatment options.

Question: What causes the pain of varicose vein?

Dr. Rheudasil: The pain is usually from the pressure from increased blood being retained in the veins that should otherwise be emptied out.

Question: Is there are relationship between varicose veins and spider veins?

Dr. Rheudasil: Spider veins are small whispy veins on the skin that are most often a result of heredity. Varicose veins are larger bulging, ropey veins that are often a result of valve incompetence, which we mentioned in the previous question. While many patients have both types of vein abnormalities, they are not directly related to one another.

Question: What would treatment be like if I came in to have it done? Painful?

Dr. Rheudasil: Treatment varies from patient to patient. It often includes closing veins with either heat or injections that do involve small needle sticks. The pain from this is usually minor. Most patients do not require any pain medication.

Thanks to everyone who participated! You can view the full chat transcript here. 

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Is There a Difference Between Spider Veins and Varicose Veins?

legs (1)Though spider veins and varicose veins are both classified as vein disorders, there are some distinct differences between them.

What do They Look Like?

Spider veins are small, wispy, web-like veins on the skin surface, usually less than one millimeter in diameter. They may be purple or red, and often appear in clusters or nests, which may look like a bruise. Varicose veins are larger veins, which often have a blue color and generally bulge under the skin. Both types of veins are visible and one of the primary treatment goals is an improvement in cosmetic appearance.

What Causes Spider Veins and Varicose Veins?

Spider veins are usually inherited. Obesity, female hormones and prolonged sitting or standing are also contributing factors. Varicose veins are most often a result of valves that function incorrectly. Normal valves allow blood to flow in only one direction—out of the leg and towards the heart. Faulty valves allow blood to flow backward into the leg, increasing pressure in the veins. This increased pressure dilates and elongates the vein, causing it to protrude and appear curved or twisted.

Do These Veins Cause Problems?

Spider veins do not usually cause symptoms, and are primarily treated to improve appearance. Varicose veins often cause heaviness, aching or pressure. They can also cause fatigue, and sometimes restless or jittery legs and itching. Swelling may be a result of vein insufficiency, but, often involves malfunctioning veins deep in the leg as well. Relief of discomfort is the reason most varicose veins are treated.

How Are Varicose Veins Treated?

Varicose veins are almost always treated in the office with minimally invasive techniques. Sclerotherapy—the injection of a dilute solution into the vein, shutting it down—can be used to treat smaller veins, while larger veins may also be treated with sclerotherapy, ablation of faulty veins and excision or mini-phlebectomy (removal) are also commonly performed treatments. The goal is to divert blood from abnormal veins into nearby normal veins, which easily accommodate the extra load. These procedures involve minimal pain and little or no down time. If you are interested in treating your spider or varicose veins, please call the Emory Vein Center for treatment by a board certified vascular surgeon.

About Dr. Rheudasil

rheudasil-j-mark (1)J. Mark Rheudasil, MD, graduated magna cum laude from Abilene Christian University in Texas and he earned his medical degree from the University of Texas Southwestern Medical School in Dallas in 1983. He completed a general surgery internship and residency program at Emory University in Atlanta, Georgia and also completed a fellowship in vascular surgery at Emory University in 1989.

Dr. Rheudasil is a board certified vascular surgeon. He is a Fellow of the American College of Surgeons and a member of the Society for Vascular Surgery and the American Venous Forum. He is also a member the Southern Association for Vascular Surgery and is a past President of the Georgia Vascular Society and the Atlanta Vascular Society.

What Causes Varicose Veins or Spider Veins? – Join Us for a Live Web Chat!

Varicose Spider VeinsWhile it’s important to look your best, it’s also important to feel your best. Males, females, the young and the old. Varicose veins can affect anyone. So have you ever wondered what causes those unsightly bulges and twists to appear on your legs?

Join us on Tuesday, April 14, at 12:00 p.m. for an interactive web chat discussing the causes of varicose veins and spider veins. Dr. Rheudasil will be available to answer questions and discuss various topics, including the causes, prevention and treatment of varicose veins.

During this interactive web chat, you’ll be able to ask questions and get real-time answers from our Emory Healthcare professional.

REGISTER NOW for our April 14 chat at emoryhealthcare.org/mdchats.

About Dr. Rheudasil

Mark Rheudasil, MDMark Rheudasil, MD, graduated magna cum laude from Abilene Christian University in Texas and he earned his medical degree from the University of Texas Southwestern Medical School in Dallas in 1983. He completed a general surgery internship and residency program at Emory University in Atlanta, Georgia. Dr. Rheudasil also completed a fellowship in vascular surgery at Emory University in 1989.

Dr. Rheudasil is a diplomat of the American Board of Surgery and is a board certified vascular surgeon. He is a Fellow of the American College of Surgeons and a member of the International Society for Cardiovascular and Endovascular Surgery, and the North American chapter of the International Society for Cardiovascular Surgery. He is also a member of the Peripheral Vascular Surgery Society, the Southern Association for Vascular Surgery, the Emory Association of Vascular Surgery, the Atlanta Vascular Society, and the Georgia Surgical Society. He is also a member of the Medical Association of Georgia, the Medical Association of Atlanta, and the Atlanta Clinical Society. He is also certified as a Registered Vascular Technologist.

Dr. Rheudasil has published articles in several medical journals including The Journal of Vascular Surgery, American Surgeon and The Journal of the Medical Association of Georgia. He has lectured at the regional and national level on a variety of topics including current reviews of vascular surgery.