At Advanced Vein Therapy in Boise, our physicians often receive questions about venous disease and the variety of options available to treat its various forms. The subject of venous disease can feel overwhelming for those who are new to the topic. The condition can manifest in different areas of the body, in different ways, and each situation is unique depending on genetics and lifestyle.
Two common ways that venous disease shows up in the body is in the form of varicose veins and spider veins. Varicose veins protrude from the skin and are dark blue or purple in appearance. Spider veins appear as a tiny, thin, blue, web-like system of veins that lies just beneath the skin.
Recently, we received an inquiry from a patient who was curious about the use of blue light laser treatment in addressing reoccurring spider veins in the legs.
What many don’t realize is that some treatments are more effective than others when used on different areas of the body. Endovenous Laser Treatment (EVT) is the gold standard for addressing facial spider veins. Due to gravity, these veins experience less pressure than leg veins and laser treatment is highly effective.
During EVT, a thin fiber is inserted into the affected vein, and a wave of light is emitted through it delivering light energy into the vein. This causes the vein to close, seal, and reroute the blood to healthier veins that are deeper inside the body. While this option is highly effective when treating facial veins, it is not as effective when used on leg veins that are under much greater pressure.
The American College of Phlebology still recommends Sclerotherapy for treating spider veins in the legs. This treatment addresses venous disease by using a very fine needle to inject a sterile, foamy solution into the affected vein. It then becomes irritated and begins to shrink and close over the course of time. When the vein closes, blood is rerouted to healthier veins within the body. Several treatments may be required before the spider veins completely disappear.
On occasion, and depending largely on genetics, spider veins in the legs may reoccur and require additional treatment. There are things you can do to help minimize the chance of reoccurrence. Some actions you can take are:
- Wear compression sock or stockings to help support your leg veins as often as possible.
- Avoid sitting or standing for long periods of time.
- Stay at a healthy weight for your size.
- Exercise for healthy circulation.
It can be disheartening when venous disease reoccurs. Fortunately, all of the treatments available at AVT are minimally invasive and have you up and back to your normal activity level quickly—if not right away. Although patients may feel some discomfort during certain vein treatment options, we have a high success rate and a great track record of providing exceptional care.
Venous disease can negatively impact your life. But, with the help of treatments and some small shifts to your lifestyle, you can have healthy, beautiful legs and enjoy all of your favorite activities year-round.