Are You At Risk for Deep Vein Thrombosis?

Some vein problems, such as varicose veins, are often little more than cosmetic concerns. But for some people, varicose veins can be a symptom of a larger vein issue or circulation problem, such as deep vein thrombosis (DVT). DVT affects millions of people per year, and according to the Centers for Disease Control, can recur in about 30 percent of patients.  Although DVT can happen to anyone, there are a variety of factors that can increase your risk for the condition. Find out if you are at risk for DVT.

Deep Vein Thrombosis Risk Factors

Elevated Hormone Levels

Elevated estrogen levels can increase your risk for developing DVT. Taking hormonal birth control pills or using another hormone based method of birth control often increases the blood’s clotting ability. The elevated hormone levels associated with pregnancy can also put a woman at an increased risk for DVT, up to six weeks after the birth of the baby. Women who are taking hormone replacement therapy may also have an elevated risk.

Injury to a Vein

Some types of injury, such as a bone fracture or muscle injury, can also cause damage to the veins, increasing a person’s risk for DVT. In some cases, the stress put on the body by major surgery, especially surgery in the abdominal, hip or leg area, can also raise the risk for DVT.

Reduced Blood Flow

Good blood flow or circulation helps reduce the likelihood of clots forming. There are several instances when circulation can be interrupted or slowed down. For example, if you need to sit still for long periods of time, such as on a long plane ride or because of bed rest, it is more difficult for the blood to pump from your legs back to your heart. The stalled circulation can make it more likely that a clot will develop. 

Genetics or Family History

Some people have an increased risk for DVT because they have a family history of the condition or of pulmonary embolisms. It’s also possible to have a higher than average risk for DVT due to an inherited blood clotting disorder. In some circumstances, a combination of factors, such as an inherited disorder combined with taking birth control pills, increase risk.

Other Risk Factors

Remember that DVT can happen to anyone, even if that person doesn’t have any of the above risk factors. Often times, simply getting older can be enough to raise the risk for the condition, as can having certain diseases or being overweight.

Often, vein treatment for DVT involves finding ways to break up the clot. Varicose vein treatment, such as wearing compression stockings, can help prevent symptoms of Post-thrombotic syndrome from occurring. If you are worried about DVT or other venous issues, scheduling an appointment at a vein clinic to discuss your treatment options with vein doctors and vascular surgeons is a good idea.

New Look Vein and Aesthetic Center has several locations in Missouri. Contact us today to schedule a consultation.

New Technologies for Venous Treatment

The American College of Phlebology estimates that more than 25 million US citizens suffer from some form of unsightly and/or painful venous condition. Naturally occurring within an extremely high percentage of the population, varicose veins are as old as human history. However, thanks to rapidly evolving treatment options, getting rid of varicose veins has never been easier.

 

An Extremely Brief History of Varicose Vein Treatment

 

In the past, the only viable option for varicose veins sufferers involved the surgical removal of any diseased veins in a procedure that is commonly known as “vein stripping.” Vascular surgeons would remove affected veins in an invasive process that resulted in significant pain, bruising, and other potential medical complications.

 

Fortunately, vein treatment has come a long way over the last several decades as specialized scientists and vein doctors have found success with minimally invasive procedures such as ambulatory phlebectomy, which employs micro-incisions to facilitate removal with a minimum of discomfort and recovery time. The typical modern vein clinic also offers a range of laser and ultrasound treatment procedures.

 

The Latest Varicose Vein Treatment Options

 

New innovations in the medical field have led to multiple varicose vein procedures that achieve exceptional results with no need for general anesthetics or dangerous chemicals. Clinical trails have suggested that these new procedures result in fewer side effects and complications. Some of these state-of-the-art treatments include…

 

  • The VenaSeal Closure System – Effective on veins of all sizes, the VenaSeal Closure System uses a proprietary medical adhesive that is delivered endovenously through a non-invasive catheter. Numbed by a mild local anesthetic, patients will feel only mild pulling or tugging sensations as the catheter places adhesive in strategic locations along the diseased vein.

 

  • The ClariVein Device – This device uses mechanico-chemical ablation (MOCA) combining the mechanical rotation of a small infusion catheter with safe chemicals to speed the closure of veins. Because the ClariVein Device engenders natural vein spasms to engender closure, it can treat varicose veins with a minimum of minimal post-operative pain and recovery time.

 

  • Varithena – A polidocanol injectable foam, Varithena is an exciting new method of treating, not only varicose veins, but tortuous (twisted) veins. This pre-manufactured foam fills the vein completely before collapsing it. In clinical trails, Varithena has proven to be both effective and long-lasting.

 

For more information about these innovative approaches to varicose vein treatment contact a highly skilled and knowledgeable representative of the New Look Vein and Aesthetic Center. With the advice of a qualified medical professional, you can find a treatment option that is right for you.

Choosing Sclerotherapy for Spider Veins

Spider veins making you self conscious about wearing shorts or swimwear? If that’s the case, you could consider sclerotherapy. This is just one of the treatments offered in a vein clinic like New Look Vein and Aesthetic Center. Under the direction of Dr. Raffi Krikorian, you can have a varicose vein treatment that can solve this problem.

What Are Varicose Veins?

Veins rely on muscle contractions and small flaps of tissue called valves to hep get blood back to the heart. As the muscles contract, they squeeze the veins, while the valves prevent blood from flowing backward. Unfortunately, those valves can fail, which allows blood to pool and distend the vein. Small veins are called spider veins and large veins are called varicose veins or varicosities, but in reality, they’re both the same thing – they just differ in size. varicose veins are one of the primary causes of venous disease.

What is Sclerotherapy?

Sclerotherapy is the most common treatment used by vein doctors and vascular surgeons to treat spider veins. It’s actually considered the gold standard for this condition. Performed in a doctor’s office or vein clinic, sclerotherapy is a simple outpatient procedure and usually takes less than an hour. The treatment is based on the concept that an irritated spider vein will swell, collapse and scar shut. The doctor injects an irritant solution into the vein and then applies compression bandages or stockings to help the vein seal closed. Most people with varicose or spider veins are good candidates for sclerotherapy.

Sclerotherapy – Different Types

There are actually three kinds of sclerotherapy. Traditional sclerotherapy relies on the irritant solution. Foam sclerotherapy uses medical solutions mixed with air to produce a creamy consistency. Foam can be used on larger, deeper varicose veins, not just spider veins. The foam can also be seen with an ultrasound device, so guided ultrasound sclerotherapy is used to find and treat deep, less visible veins. Foam also uses less medication per treatment, which allows treatment of a larger area with the same amount of treatment solution.

What’s the Procedure Like?

Sclerotherapy is actually a very simple procedure. The doctor will carefully cleanse the skin. Next, a very fine needle is used to inject the sclerotherapy solution into the vein. You might feel a burning or stinging sensation as the liquid is injected. The sensation usually goes away quickly. The spider veins swell and then collapse in response to the irritation from the solution. You should be able to go home shortly after the treatment and resume your normal activities within a day or so. You’ll need to wear compression stockings for a couple of weeks to help the veins scar closed.

Sclerotherapy is the vein treatment that can solve your spider vein problems. Please contact us to schedule an appointment for an assessment. We can answer any questions you might have. Be aware that sclerotherapy for spider veins is considered a cosmetic procedure by most insurance companies – we’ll help you work out a payment solution.

 

 

 

When You Need a Vein Doctor

Your body contains thousands of miles of blood vessels, including arteries, veins and capillaries. These various blood vessels make up what is called the vascular system (which also includes the heart, of course). If you develop vascular problems related to the veins and need vein treatment, you need a vein doctor like Dr. Raffi Krikorian, at New Look Vein and Aesthetic Center in St. Louis, Missouri.

Vascular Problems

Although vascular problems can technically include heart disease, most medical professionals use these terms to refer to vein issues such as varicose veins and spider veins. Varicose veins occur in the legs, while spider veins (which are much smaller) can also occur in places like the face. In both cases, these conditions occur because tiny flaps of tissue (valves) inside the vein stop working properly. When the valves fail, blood backs up in the vein and it becomes distended, causing the characteristic bulging, twisted varicose vein or the colored “starburst” of a spider vein. Spider veins may not cause any symptoms, but are often a cosmetic issue, while varicose veins may cause aching, burning or swelling in the legs.

What’s a Vein Doctor?

The term vein doctor isn’t used to describe a medical specialty. Interventional radiologists, interventional cardiologists and vascular surgeons may all be called vein doctors. Although their basic training is the same in medical school, each specialty covers different kinds of medical conditions and treatments. Radiologists specialize in the use of imaging technology to diagnose and treat disease, cardiologists like Dr. Krikorian specialize in heart and vascular disease, and vascular surgeons specialize in surgical treatment of vascular disease. When it comes to vascular problems like varicose veins or spider veins, any of these physicians may offer in-office treatments such as sclerotherapy or ambulatory phlebectomy, but only surgeons offer surgical procedures like a vein stripping.

What Services Does a Vein Doctor Offer?

Depending on the practice and specialty, a vein doctor may offer a variety of different treatments. Many of these are minimally invasive and can be performed in a doctor’s office or vein clinic. Recovery time is short (sometimes only a day or so). At New Look Vein and Aesthetic Center, we offer ambulatory phlebectomy, endovenous laser ablation (EVLT), radiofrequency (RF) ablation and ultrasound guided sclerotherapy for varicose veins. Sclerotherapy is considered the treatment of choice for spider veins. We can also recannalize (open) major veins that have become blocked and use ovarian vein emobolization to treat what is known as pelvic congestion syndrome. We also offer some of the newest treatments, such as Venaseal (a glue that can close varicose veins), mechanico-chemical ablation (MOCA) – which improves the results of sclerotherapy – and Varithena foam, which lasts longer and is more effective than regular sclerotherapy solutions.

If you have varicose or spider veins, we can help. Please contact us to schedule an appointment. We’re also happy to answer any questions about vascular disease, varicose vein treatment, insurance coverage or other related issues.

Get Varicose Vein Treatment Before The Damage is Too Great

Think varicose veins will go away on their own? They won’t. In fact, they’ll get worse and could put your health at risk.

Going without varicose vein treatment could lead to hyperpigmentation and ulcers, as well as an increased risk of dangerous blood clots in your legs.

Many people think vein treatment requires surgery when in actuality, most can be treated at a vein clinic. Read on to learn why varicose veins occur and to discover your treatment options.

What Causes Varicose Veins?

The condition is quite common among people as they age. According to womenshealth.gov, about half of Americans over the age of 50 have varicose veins. However, the condition can occur in younger people, too.

Varicose veins are caused by weak or damaged valves in your veins. The damage is due to a variety of factors.

1. Aging. The valves in your veins stop working as well as you get older.

2. Heredity. Genetics plays a role in your risk of developing varicose veins. If a close relative has them, there’s a greater chance you will, too.

3. Weight. Excess weight adds stress to your veins leading to damage and varicose veins.

4. Sedentary lifestyle. Sitting or standing for long periods means your body’s circulatory system has to work haqrder to move blood to and from your extremities. The added effort causes vein valves to break down quicker.

5. Hormones. Fluctuations in your levels of estrogen or progesterone can lead to varicose veins. Puberty, menopause and taking birth control pills can causes these hormone levels to change.

6. Pregnancy. Pregnant women have a greater volume of blood in their bodies. Added to that, the growing fetus puts extra pressure on the mother’s veins. The combination of these factors can cause varicose veins during pregnancy. The condition will often improve after delivery.

What are My Varicose Vein Treatment Options?

Sclerotherapy is the preferred method vein doctors use to combat most varicose veins. It’s noninvasive, requires little down time and is highly effective. A sclerosing substance is injected into the problem vein. The solution causes the varicose vein to collapse and the blood that was flowing through the vein to clot. The varicose vein disappears, helping your legs to be healthier and more attractive. Sclerotherapy also works well for spider veins.

If you have varicose veins, schedule a consultation with vascular surgeons to determine a treatment plan. An ultrasound of your legs will likely be ordered so your vein doctor can have a more accurate assessment of your circulatory system.

To schedule a consultation, please call (314) 272-4150.

Understanding the Dangers of Deep Vein Thrombosis

Deep vein thrombosis, or DVT, is a serious condition that affects millions of people each year. Fortunately, with the proper vein treatment, complications of DVT can be prevented.

What is DVT?

DVT occurs when a blood clot develops within a vein located deep inside the body, obstructing the flow of blood. This condition can occur anywhere in the body, but it is most common in the leg. If DVT isn’t properly treated, pulmonary embolism can occur. With pulmonary embolism, the blood clot breaks free, travels through the veins and blocks blood flow in the lungs. This condition can be fatal.

The symptoms of DVT may vary. However, some of the most common symptoms include aching, swelling, cramps and tenderness. In some cases, DVT can occur without producing any symptoms. If DVT is left untreated for a significant amount of time, another complication known as “post-thrombotic syndrome” can occur. This condition is characterized by pain, itching, heaviness, tingling, ulcer, discoloration, varicose veins and swelling.

Treatment for DVT

When vein doctors discover DVT, they can treat it using a technique known as “thrombolytic therapy.” This treatment utilizes an injection of clot-dissolving medication, which breaks down the clot and restores the healthy flow of blood. This medication may flow through the blood vessels, or vascular surgeons may deliver the medication directly to the clot using a catheter. Some catheters used for this purpose also include attachments that help to break up the clot mechanically.

If DVT progresses to post-thrombotic syndrome, additional treatments may be necessary. For example, if the clot leads to the development of varicose veins, varicose vein treatment may be used to alleviate the symptoms.

What Should I Do if I Have DVT?

If you have been experiencing the symptoms of DVT, or if you have other reasons to believe that you may have a blood clot deep in your veins, you need to seek treatment from a vein clinic immediately. Please contact New Look Vein and Aesthetic Center to make an appointment with an experienced vein doctor.

Exploring Your Available Vein Treatment Options

If you are suffering from spider veins or varicose veins, you may feel both embarrassed and frustrated. Fortunately, you don’t have to let your abnormal veins continue to impact your life. Below is some information about the vein treatment options available from your local vein clinic.

Conservative Treatment

If your condition is mild, you may need only conservative treatment. Conservative treatment for abnormal veins typically consists of wearing compression stockings, elevating your affected limbs, losing excess weight and/or engaging in regular exercise.

Sclerotherapy

One of the most common vein treatment procedures performed by vein doctors is sclerotherapy. This treatment is appropriate for both spider veins and varicose veins. During the procedure, a special medication is injected directly into the affected veins. This medication causes the vein to collapse and be reabsorbed by the body. Sclerotherapy may be performed with or without ultrasound guidance.

Radiofrequency Closure

Radiofrequency closure is a varicose vein treatment options that works by introducing radiofrequency energy into a diseased vein. This energy heats the walls of the vein, forcing it to seal off. Blood is then redirected to healthier veins.

Endovenous Laser Ablation

Endovenous laser ablation is similar to radiofrequency closure in that it uses a catheter to deliver energy into the interior of a diseased vein. However, this procedure uses laser energy instead of radiofrequency energy.

Ambulatory Phlebectomy

For varicose veins located near the surface of the skin, ambulatory phlebectomy may be the best choice. During this procedure, vascular surgeons remove the diseased vein from the body entirely through small incisions or punctures. This procedure results in an immediate relief from all associated symptoms.

Each of the procedures above offers different advantages for patients with abnormal veins. In order to determine which procedure is right for you, you must first visit an experienced vein doctor. Your vein doctor will be able to provide you with an accurate diagnosis, as well as valuable insight you can use to make the right decision. Contact New Look Vein and Aesthetic Center to learn more.

What’s the Best Varicose Vein Treatment for You?

When you visit a vein clinic, your vein doctor will discuss a wide range of varicose vein treatment options with you. The number of different treatments available can seem overwhelming. But, there’s a reason there are so many different options. Some treatments are better suited for certain types of vein problems than others. One of the responsibilities of vascular surgeons is to help you understand the differences between each treatment and to help you pick the best one.

Your Varicose Vein Treatment Options:

If You’re Not Sure if You’re Ready for Treatment

Not every patient is ready for a medical vein treatment just yet. There are cases where vein doctors will recommend what’s know as conservative treatments, or self-care measures, to keep varicose veins from getting worse. These treatments won’t necessarily reverse your vein problems, but they can help slow down the progression of the varicose veins.

Conservative treatment options include wearing compression stockings, losing weight if you are overweight, and getting more exercise or physical activity.

If You Have Smaller Veins

Some vein treatments are more effective on smaller varicose veins or on spider veins. These treatments include sclerotherapy. During sclerotherapy, the vein doctor injects the spider or small varicose veins with a special chemical solution. The solution destroys the veins, so that they collapse and ultimately fade from view. The blood that was flowing through those veins is simply redirected to different veins in the legs.

You might need several treatment sessions with sclerotherapy before you see the full results from treatment. There’s also a version of the treatment that uses foam to collapse the veins and that might be more effective for treating larger veins.

If Your Veins Are Deeper

Some varicose veins are located deeper in the legs, which makes treating them with surface treatments a bit trickier. Ultrasound guided treatments can be an effective option if your veins are difficult to see on the surface. During ultrasound guided sclerotherapy, the vascular surgeon uses ultrasound imaging to find his or her way to the right vein, before injecting it.

Endovenous vein ablation can also be an effective treatment for deeper veins and for larger veins.

If Your Veins are Causing You Discomfort

Larger varicose veins often cause discomfort as well as make you feel self conscious. If your veins are causing throbbing, aches or other discomfort, treatment such as endovenous vein ablation or radiofrequency closure. Both methods use a catheter to seal off and destroy larger, bulky veins.

Another treatment for painful veins is ambulatory phlebectomy. It’s a minimally invasive procedure best suited for veins close to the surface of the skin. During the treatment, your vein surgeon will make small incisions near the affected veins, then carefully remove those veins from your legs.

Deciding to treat your varicose veins is just the first step. Discuss your vein treatment options with a vascular surgeon today, so that you’re able to make the choice that’s best for you.

The Symptoms and Causes of Venous Disease

Approximately 25 million US citizens currently suffer from venous disease. Otherwise known as venous insufficiency, venous disease is a condition that arises when the flow of blood through the veins is weak or otherwise inadequate. As a result, gravity causes blood to pool in the lower extremities, typically causing unsightly and potentially painful and harmful varicose veins.

 

These varicose veins (or “spider veins”) have weakened or damaged tissue walls that cannot effectively pump blood upward. While a normal vein includes a number of one-way valves that close to prevent blood from falling downward, a varicose vein contains valves that refuse to close completely. This condition severely limits the flow of blood back to the heart.

 

While mild forms of venous insufficiency present only cosmetic issues and/or mild discomfort, serious cases can be extremely painful and dangerous. In very extreme cases, venous disease can lead to limb loss or even death.

 

Venous Insufficiency Symptoms

 

In short, venous insufficiency is a serious condition that should be addressed by the vein doctors and/or vascular surgeons at a specialized vein clinic or an equivalent medical setting. Seek vein treatment immediately if you experience one or more of the following symptoms:

 

•          Leg heaviness and/or fatigue

•           Pain or tenderness (particularly along the course of a vein)

•          Itching, burning, and/or throbbing

•          Swelling and/or water retention

•          Restless legs syndrome

•          Bight cramps

•          Restless legs

•          Paresthesia (a tingling, prickling, or “pins and needles” sensation)

•          Intolerance to exercise

 

Venous Insufficiency Causes

 

Individuals who are currently suffering from or have previously suffered from blood clots and varicose veins are at the highest risk of venous insufficiency. Blood clots cause venous insufficiency because they make it more difficult for blood to flow forward. They can also cause damage that can further restrict this flow. As previously stated, the weak walls and missing/impaired valves in varicose veins will cause blood to leak backwards and begin to pool in the legs.

 

Other factors and conditions that commonly contribute to venous insufficiency include:

 

•          Obesity

•          Smoking

•          Muscle weakness and/or inactivity

•          Leg injury/trauma

•          Cancer

•          Phlebitis (vein inflammation)

•          Pregnancy

 

Because susceptibility to venous insufficiency is passed down from generation to generation, a family history of the condition also places patients at a significantly higher risk.

 

What to Do

 

Individuals who suffer from venous insufficiency should seek the help of a skilled and knowledgeable medical professional as soon as possible. Varicose vein treatment from a specialized clinic such as the New Look Vein and Aesthetic Center can not only improve the appearance of your legs but prevent a range of dangerous and potentially life-threatening conditions.