Tiny blue veins have just begun to show up on your upper legs. They are barely noticeable and they don't appear to be bothering you otherwise. This is the time to have those veins removed. Once they grow larger, you'll have a number of uncomfortable symptoms and you won't like how they look. If you don't have these veins removed now, here are some of the health problems you may experience and some of the ways a vein specialist treats them.
Varicose Veins Affect Circulation
These veins have lost their ability to move blood through them. The blood pools in the veins and, over time, the vein walls stretch and the vein grows larger. The blood becomes trapped in the vein and doesn't make it into your lower legs. When the veins have become large enough to significantly impact the flow of blood to your lower legs, some of the symptoms you will experience include:
- coolness in your lower legs and feet
- muscle aches in the lower legs
- burning sensation directly over the varicose vein
- throbbing or tingling in the lower legs
- tiredness in the legs after just a little physical activity
Varicose Vein Treatment
When you get the varicose veins treated while they are small, there is a better chance that they can be removed without leaving a trace. The treatment of small veins is also less invasive than when the veins have become larger. Here are the typical treatments used on varicose veins.
Sclerotherapy - A substance is injected into the varicose vein, which irritates the wall of the blood vessel. The vein shrinks and the blood inside of it clots. The body eventually absorbs the vein, leaving no trace. This treatment is most effective on small veins. It may need to be repeated to completely remove the vein.
Laser Varicose Vein Treatment - This approach uses a small laser inserted into the vein. Heat from the laser creates scar tissue in the vein, which causes it to collapse. The body absorbs the vein, often without a trace. This treatment is used on small to medium varicose veins.
Radiofrequency Ablation - When sclerotherapy and laser treatment are less effective on small to medium veins, this treatment can be used. It makes use of radio waves to damage the varicose vein and cause it to shrink. The body will again absorb the tissue, but this technique is more likely to leave some signs of scarring.
Vein Stripping - Large varicose veins must be physically removed from your legs, which usually leaves some scars. Vein stripping uses a small rod inserted down through the length of the vein. The vein is tied to the rod at several points. The rod is then pulled out of the leg with the vein still attached to it.
Phlebectomy - For very large, convoluted varicose veins, they must be cut into smaller pieces and removed from your leg. Several incisions are required over the vein, which can leave some bruising and scarring after they heal.