How a Vein Doctor Can Help You

For some people, spider veins and varicose veins are merely a cosmetic issue. They don’t look good, but they also don’t cause any medical problems. For others, varicose veins can cause symptoms and complications, ranging from burning and aching to bleeding and restless legs. Fortunately, a vein doctor can help people dealing with varicose veins and other vein problems. From determining the cause of your problem to performing varicose vein treatment, vein doctors are looking out for your well being.

What a Vein Doctor Can Do

Diagnose Your Condition

The first step to treatment is getting an accurate diagnosis from a doctor. Vascular surgeons diagnose varicose veins and other forms of venous disease by first looking at the legs, checking for signs of swelling and bulging veins. The doctor will most likely ask you to describe your symptoms and will usually ask if you have any burning or pain.

Since some vein problems are deeper than others and can’t be detected by the naked eye, vein doctors often use ultrasound imaging to look for blood clots or weakened valves and to evaluate how the blood is flowing through your veins.

Recommend the Best Treatment

After vein doctors have diagnosed your condition, the next step is for them to recommend the most appropriate treatment. Treatment depends on the severity of your vein issue and on what you would like to get from  it. For example, if you are dealing with small spider veins, treatment with sclerotherapy might work best.  Depending on the location of your varicose veins, a treatment such as ovarian vein embolization might be required.  Ovarian vein embolization is usually performed when a person is suffering from pelvic congestion syndrome, which occurs when varicose veins form in the uterus or ovaries.

The right treatment for you also depends on how long you can commit to recovery. Many vein treatments don’t require much downtime and allow you to return to work the next day. Depending on the vein treatment, you might need to go in for several sessions before you get the results you want.

Help You Make Lifestyle Changes

Along with performing necessary treatments, the doctors at a vein clinic can recommend lifestyle changes to keep your vein problems from becoming worse. For example, adding exercises to your daily routine can help keep varicose veins in check. Exercise improves blood flow and strengthens your muscles so that they are better able to push blood back up to the heart. Losing weight, if you are overweight, can also help keep your vein problems from becoming worse.

Dr. Raffi Krikorian offers a variety of vein treatments at New Look Vein and Aesthetic Center in St. Louis. To learn more about your options and to learn more about how a vein doctor can help you, call (314) 272-4150 for a consultation today.

Why Do I Need a Prescription for Latisse?

Latisse is an FDA-approved drug that works to make your eyelashes grow thicker, longer and darker. Since it’s a pharmaceutical drug and not an over-the-counter beauty product, it must be prescribed by a medical doctor who oversees your cosmetic services treatment.

Can I get a Latisse prescription?

A licensed medical doctor will need to assess your health and make certain Latisse is safe for you to use. If you’re healthy enough to use Latisse, your doctor will give you a prescription that can be filled at the pharmacy of your choice. Some doctors sell the product from their offices. After using it, you’ll need to be monitored by your doctor who will look for unwanted side effects and gage if the medicine is working as intended.

What about buying it on the internet?

There are probably places where you can purchase Latisse online. However, to be certain you’re getting the true product that has been approved by the Food and Drug Administration, you’ll need to purchase it at a licensed pharmacy. If you purchase prescription drugs online, it’s possible you won’t receive the actual product. The product you get may not be effective or it could cause damage to your eyes. It’s always best to purchase prescription drugs from a licensed pharmacy instead of taking your chances with a knock off.

How can I get Latisse cheaper?

It’s true that insurance usually doesn’t cover the cost of Latisse, and the average cost of a month-supply along with applicators is about $120. But don’t look to save a few bucks by purchasing from an unreliable source. Allegan, the company that manufactures Latisse, offers a customer loyalty program that provides savings for all their products, which include Botox and the dermal filler Juvederm.

To learn more about how Latisse works, please get in touch with us at New Look Vein and Aesthetic Center. Dr. Krikorian is an expert in cosmetic services and aesthetic surgery and can help you discover the products and services that will help you look and feel your best.

What’s Are Dermal Fillers?

Among the most requested cosmetic services in the industry are dermal fillers.  These safe, effective alternatives to aesthetic surgery give people options for improving their appearance without going under the knife.

What Is a Dermal Filler?

A dermal filler restores volume and reduces the appearance of wrinkles in your face.  As we age, we naturally lose fat in our faces, meaning muscles are working closer to the surface of the skin.  When this happens, lines, wrinkles, and skin irregularities begin to be more noticeable.  Dermal fillers can then injected into areas of the face where wrinkles are most prominent on the arms, face, neck, and hands.

Which Dermal Filler is Right For Me?

Only a qualified cosmetic services provider can make that determination, but here are a few things to consider.

  • Radiesse – Calcium Hydroxylapatite, known by its brand name Radiesse, is the heaviest of the dermal fillers.  According to the brand’s website, the active ingredient in Radiesse, calcium hydroxylapatitie is found naturally in human bones and is used to fill moderate to severe creases in the face.  Radiesse is produced biosynthetically, meaning no animals or animal products are used to produce the compound, thereby lessening the likelihood of allergic reaction or negative side effects.
  • Collagen – According to the American Society of Plastic Surgeons, collagen is a natural substance that serves as a support structure in your skin, just below the surface.  Today, collagen is used in a variety of fillers to reduce the signs of aging, fill scars, and add volume to the face.  Made from either human or animal skin, collagen can be derived from cows or pigs and requires allergy testing before use.
  • Hyaluronic Acid – Again, according to the American Society of Plastic Surgeons, Hyaluronic acid is found in almost every living thing on earth.  In humans, it is important in the transference of nutrients into the blood stream and skin.  When it is injected in gel form, it acts like a cushion that supports tissues in the face and brings water to the surface of the skin to make it look fresh.  Under the brand names Juvederm, Perlane, and Restylane, to name a few, Hyaluronic acid is used not just for cosmetic purposes, but also in wound and joint repair.

Regardless of the dermal filler you choose, it is important to consult with a qualified professional with experience in cosmetic procedures.  Contact Dr. Raffi Krikorian at New Look Vein and Aesthetic Center to determine which dermal filler is right for you.

The Most Recent Spider Vein Treatment Options

Spider veins might be small, but for someone bothered by their appearance, the impact on self-confidence is often significant.  Vascular surgeons have used various therapies involving injections, lasers, and heat to get rid of these unwanted blood vessels.  Fortunately, spider vein treatment options today are more convenient than ever.

What Exactly Are Spider Veins?

They are are small red or blue blood vessels that most often form on the legs or face.  While some consider them a kind of varicose veins, others say they are similar but distinctive.

These abnormal vessels form when pressure in a vein enlarges it.  Typically smaller than varicose veins, they are usually closer to the surface of the skin.  Their name comes from their weblike appearance.

The Cleveland Clinic reports that between 30 to 50 percent of American adults develop spider or varicose veins.

How Do Vein Doctors Currently Treat Them?

Today vascular surgeons perform outpatient treatments for spider veins in a vein clinic.  The two most common options used are sclerotherapy and VeinGogh Ohmic Thermolysis.

Sclerotherapy for spider veins

Overall, healthcare providers still consider sclerotherapy the gold standard for getting rid of spider veins.  According to Stony Brook Medicine, surgeons also use this minimally invasive procedure as a varicose vein treatment.  Although it usually does not eliminate all a patient’s spider veins in one session, most individuals see an improvement of 50 to 90 percent after a treatment.  Many require four to six treatments for optimal results.

Sclerotherapy involves injecting a specially manufactured substance directly into each targeted spider vein.  The injected solution or foam sclerosant irritates a vein’s walls, causing them to become sticky and eventually close.  After destruction of the vein, the vessel disappears, and neighboring veins take over its workload.

Many physicians today prefer using ultrasound guided sclerotherapy.  The Cleveland Clinic reports that this involves injecting a foaming agent that has been mixed with a sclerosant.  Ultrasound technology allows the surgeon to guide the injection into veins that are not easy to see on the skin’s surface.  Doctors sometimes combine ultrasound technology with other procedures to remove spider veins such as radiofrequency ablation.

VeinGogh Ohmic Thermolysis

Physicians also use this procedure to treat vascular problems such as cherry hemangiomas, rosacea, and skin tags.  Considered an alternative to light-based treatments, it utilizes a thin, insulated probe.  Heat transferred through the probe coagulates spider veins.

VeinGogh is appropriate for veins up to 0.3 mm, such as those found on the face.  For larger vessels, vein doctors often use the procedure with sclerotherapy.

Results from this treatment are immediate.  Most patients require up to three procedures for the best possible outcome.

When considering treatment options, it is important to realize that no procedure will prevent the formation of new spider veins.  For that reason, many patients return for periodic treatment.

 

Help! How Can I Choose a Vein Clinic?

Vein disease can be an indicator of a more serious problem, so it is important to get help if you have it. Even if your vein disease is not a serious health problem, varicose veins and spider veins can interfere with your daily life. They can prevent you from feeling comfortable in shorts, skirts, and short sleeves, or cause your legs to ache when you are walking.

Once you decide to get help for your vein disease, the next step is to choose a vein clinic for your care. This can be a tough decision if many clinics are in your area, but you can narrow your options by checking for some specific aspects. These are some tips when choosing a vein clinic.

Focus on the vein specialist.

The vein specialist is in charge of your treatment, so you want to be sure you are under the care of a top doctor. Look for a board certified doctor such as a board certified cardiologist and a fellow of the American College of Cardiology. Other experience can include interventional cardiology training in the form of fellowships and residencies.

Think about other services.

Some vein clinics are part of larger facilities that offer additional services. If you need any of these services, you might want to choose a vein clinic that is housed in the same building. That way, you can get all of your treatments done in one place and make life simpler. Some of the possible options include cosmetic treatments such as Botox, dermal fillers, chemical peels, facial skin rejuvenation, and waxing.

Ask for proof of results.

Your vein clinic should be able to provide evidence of satisfied patients. You may be able to see before and after photos of patients who have had varicose and spider veins removed, for example. You could also ask to talk to patients who can describe their experiences and results for you.

Consider logistics.

Real life comes into play when selecting a vein clinic for your treatment. You cannot base your decision solely on the quality of the doctor and the comfort of the vein clinic. Instead, you need to consider factors such as location. A clinic near you is easier to get to and less of a hassle when attending your scheduled appointments.

Financing is also important. Check to see if the vein clinic accepts your insurance coverage or financing options that make payment more manageable for you. Some clinics offer specials for vein treatment or other cosmetic procedures. Taking advantage of these specials can be a reason for choosing one vein clinic over another.

Go with your gut.

Sometimes, you can gather all the available information and still not have a clear cut favorite choice. At that point, you can use your intuition to choose a clinic. Consider which location and vein doctors make you feel most comfortable and confident. That vein clinic may be the best one for you.

Should I Have Professional Vein Treatment?

If you are suffering from the symptoms of varicose veins or spider veins, you may wonder whether your condition is serious enough to warrant professional vein treatment. To determine whether you should schedule an appointment with a vein specialist, ask yourself the questions below.

1. What are my symptoms?

Patients with spider veins may notice small, web-like veins on their hands, face, neck and legs. These veins are not raised above the skin’s surface and they rarely cause discomfort. Patients with varicose veins, however, will see larger, swollen veins that seem to be twisted and gnarled. These veins may be raised or deep. They also tend to cause other symptoms, such as pain, cramping, tingling and weakness.

If you are experiencing any of the symptoms above, you may benefit from professional vein treatment.

2. Can I handle this on my own?

In some cases, patients are able to relieve the symptoms of abnormal veins with at-home treatments. For example, if you are suffering from painful varicose veins, you may be able to improve your condition by wearing compression stockings, avoiding long periods of sitting or standing and elevating your legs as much as possible. However, for many patients, these conservative measures are not enough. If you have already tried at-home treatment with no success, or if you don’t believe you would benefit from at-home treatment, it may be time to make an appointment at a vein clinic.

3. Am I comfortable with the idea of professional treatment?

Professional treatment can dramatically improve the appearance of abnormal veins, as well as any accompanying symptoms. Various treatment options are available for patients with abnormal veins, including sclerotherapy, ambulatory phlebectomy, laser therapy and more. Depending on the type of treatment you choose, injections and/or surgery may be required. Although these procedures carry very little risk and require only limited recovery time, they are still more invasive than at-home therapy.

If you are ready to try a minimally-invasive treatment to resolve symptoms of varicose veins or spider veins, making an appointment with a vein doctor is the most appropriate course of action. To learn more about your vein treatment options, contact the New Look Vein and Aesthetic Center today.

 

 

Your Questions about Latisse Answered

As you get older, you may notice your eyelashes don’t look as long or as thick as they once did. While it’s a normal part of the aging process, it’s not one you have to quietly accept. And it won’t require aesthetic surgery.

Latisse is an ointment used to promote the growth of eyelashes and has become very popular among non-invasive cosmetic services.

The active drug – bimatoprost – was originally used to treat glaucoma. People who used bimatoprost noticed their eyelashes grew in thicker and fuller. Thus, the drug was formulated for use in people who wanted longer, darker lashes.

While it’s effective, there are some things you should know about the drug before you begin use. Here are the answers to some common questions about the product.

Answers about Latisse

How often should I apply it?

Latisse only needs to be applied once a day. Use a small eyeliner brush to paint it onto your upper lash line only. Wash the brush after each application.

When should I apply the product?

It might be easiest to apply it at night. Make sure you take off all your eye makeup, including mascara, before applying the ointment. You can apply Latisse in the morning, but make certain it has dried completely before you apply makeup.

Can I wear it under my makeup?

Yes, you can. Just make certain you let the product dry completely before you put on mascara. Otherwise, your lashes won’t receive the same concentration of medication.

Will Latisse change my eye color?

There has been a lot of misleading information about the product’s ability to change the color of your irises. Remember, bimatoprost was originally prescribed as a daily eye drop to treat glaucoma. In those original FDA clinical trials, there was a 1 percent occurrence of darkening of the eye itself. It seems to occur more in patients with hazel or light brown eyes. However, you don’t put Latisse in your eye. It’s put along the lash line. While there’s a very slim chance that your eye color could get darker from using Latisse, this situation has never been reported since the ointment has been in use.

Can I use it on my eyebrows?

Yes. Just like your eyelashes, the ointment will promote hair regrowth in your eyebrows.

How long will it take to work?

While everyone is different, it’ll probably take eight-10 weeks to see results.

My eyelashes look great. Can I stop using it?

If you think your eyelashes have reached their potential, you can certainly start using Latisse every other day instead of every day.

More questions about Latisse? Please give us a call. We’d love to talk with you about any of the cosmetic services we offer, including Botox and the popular dermal filler called Bellafill.

What to Expect from a Visit to a Vein Specialist

Your first visit to a vein specialist can be a nerve-wracking experience. Here is some information to help you prepare for your appointment.

About Vein Specialists

A vein specialist is a physician who is trained to evaluate and diagnose vein condition. Vein specialists are also capable of administering various treatments to patients with vein disease in order to improve their symptoms.

The Exam

During you first visit to a vein specialist, the doctor will examine your abnormal veins. To make this part of the appointment as easy as possible, be sure to wear loose fitting clothing that will allow your doctor to access the affected veins without difficulty. Your doctor will also ask you questions about your symptoms, as well as any at-home treatments you have tried. Be prepared to answer these questions in as much detail as possible.

Diagnosis

Once the doctor has completed the exam and reviewed your medical history, he or she will diagnose your condition. Depending on the circumstances, you may be diagnosed with spider veins, varicose veins or both. If the doctor suspects another issue or complication, further testing may be recommended before you decide on a course of treatment.

Treatment

A vein specialist will offer a range of treatments to meet the needs of various patients. Here at the New Look Vein and Aesthetic Center, for example, we offer multiple treatments for both spider veins and varicose veins. Some of the treatments you may consider for these conditions include:

  • Sclerotherapy – During sclerotherapy, a special solution is injected into spider veins or varicose veins. This solution irritates the walls of the vein and causes them to collapse. It may be performed with or without the help of ultrasound guidance.
  • Endovenous Laser Ablation – Endovenous laser ablation treats abnormal veins with laser energy, which seals them off and diverts blood into healthier blood vessels. This treatment is appropriate even for varicose veins located deep within the skin.
  • Ambulatory Phlebectomy – Ambulatory phlebectomy is a surgical procedure used to remove superficial varicose veins from the body entirely.
  • Radiofrequency Ablation – Radiofrequency ablation involves the administration of radiofrequency energy into the interior of the vein with a small catheter.
  • VeinGoghOhmic Thermolysis – VeinGoghOhmic Thermolysis is a superficial laser treatment designed to improve the appearance of spider veins.

Make an Appointment

If you are interested in visiting a vein specialist, please contact the New Look Vein and Aesthetic Center today to make an appointment.

5 Botox Myths Debunked

People have lots of opinions about  Botox.

Some think it’s poison. Other believe you can get addicted to it. Still others assume your face will freeze in place after you receive an injection.

These things simply aren’t true. Botox® is completely safe and scientifically proven to improve the look of expression lines on your face. Women and men have been using the product for years to achieve a youthful, vibrant appearance.

To prove it’s safe and effective, let us debunk some common myths about Botox.

Myth #1: It’s harmful to your body.

While Botox® is made from botulinum toxin, a type of bacteria that can cause food poisoning, it’s entirely safe to use as an injectable. The concentration of the botulinum toxin is extremely low. Plus, it’s injected into a very specific set of muscles with a very specific purpose. It isn’t ingested into your blood stream where it can move throughout your body.

In short, Botox isn’t capable of spreading to areas of your where it could be dangerous.

Myth #2: It causes facial paralysis.

Botox and any other dermal filler should always be administered by a highly qualified physician. That way, you’ll receive natural-looking results. Too much product can give your facial muscles a tight, rigid appearance. That’s why you should only let an experienced physician like Dr. Krikorian perform the treatment.

Myth #3: It’s addictive.

While you could become addicted to your fantastic appearance, you can’t get addicted to Botox itself. The product stays in your body for up to six months following treatment. At that time, you’ll probably want to come in for additional injections to maintain your youthful glow. But it won’t be because your body “craves” more Botox.

Myth #4: It’s painful.

True, Botox is injected into your skin with a needle, so it’s natural to assume the treatment hurts. In truth, the injections aren’t painful and feel similar to a mosquito bite. If you’re really sensitive or become uncomfortable, Dr. Krikorian will use a topical anesthetic to dull the sensation.

Myth #5: It’s only for old ladies.

Anyone over the age of 18 can receive treatments. In fact, research indicates that the younger you start using Botox, the more effective it is during your lifetime. So when you start seeing wrinkles and line on your forehead or around your eyes, consider Botox to retain your youthful appearance.

When you’re ready to talk more about Botox or other cosmetic services like Latisse or aesthetic surgery, schedule an appointment with Dr. Krikorian. He’s highly experienced and trained to help you look your best at any age.

All About Latisse

In the past, the only way to make your eyelashes appear darker and thicker was to wear mascara. This is only a temporary fix, and it often looks unnatural. It can also wear off throughout the day, especially if the eyelashes are exposed to water. Fortunately, a new option is now available to women who want to improve the appearance of their eyelashes: Latisse.

What is Latisse?

Latisse is a topical treatment designed to thicken eyelashes. It has been approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, but it is currently available to patients by prescription only.

How Does it Work?

After your doctor prescribes Latisse, you will apply the product to the base of your eyelashes each night. Over time, the ingredients in Latisse will increase the number of hairs that grow in this area, as well as the length of the growth phase of each hair.

The results of Latisse will appear gradually, with the full results becoming apparent after about 16 weeks of treatment. However, you may experience noticeable improvement in as little as one month.

What are the Risks?

Like all cosmetic treatments, Latisse comes with certain risks. For example, Latisse may cause some discoloration of the colored part of the eye and/or the skin surrounding the application site. While skin darkening may be reversible, any discoloration that occurs in the colored part of the eye is likely to be permanent. Some patients also experience hair growth outside of the eyelash area and/or eye irritation when using Latisse. Latisse will work only for as long as you continue using the product, and it can be used only for the lashes on the upper eyelid. If you discontinue Latisse, your lashes will gradually return to normal.

How Do I Learn More about Latisse?

You can learn more about Latisse by making an appointment with a qualified cosmetic doctor. To get started, please call the New Look Vein and Aesthetic Center in St. Louis today. During your initial appointment, we will review your medical history and perform an exam to see if Latisse is an appropriate treatment for you. We will also discuss the potential side effects and costs of the treatment so that you can make an informed decision.

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