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What are varicose veins and spider veins?

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Spider veins are like varicose veins but smaller. Often, they are red or blue. They can look like tree branches or spiderwebs with their short, jagged lines. This patient had large clusters bluish colored spider veins around the knee (see top picture). These were treated with sclerotherapy injections at La Jolla Vein Care (after picture on bottom). To see how sclerotherapy works, go to La Jolla Vein Care’s Youtube channel.

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Varicose veins are bulging, twisted veins located just under the skin. This is a before and after picture of a patient who was treated at La Jolla Vein Care with radiofrequency ablation and foam sclerotherapy to dissolve the varicose veins. There are no surgical incisions with these treatments.

Varicose (VAR-i-kos) veins are enlarged veins that can be blue, red, or flesh-colored. They often look like cords and appear twisted and bulging. They can be swollen and raised above the surface of the skin. Varicose veins are often found on the thighs, backs of the calves, or the inside of the leg. During pregnancy, varicose veins can form around the vagina and buttocks.

Spider veins are like varicose veins but smaller. They also are closer to the surface of the skin than varicose veins. Often, they are red or blue. They can look like tree branches or spiderwebs with their short, jagged lines. They can be found on the legs and face and can cover either a very small or very large area of skin.

 

Highlights of the National Vein Congress

The La Jolla Vein Care doctors and staff attended the American College of Phlebology (ACP) Annual Conference in Phoenix last week.  More than 1,000 vein care practitioners from the United States and around the world attended the meeting to share information and research in the field of vein disorders (also known as phlebology).  The speakers included vein and vascular experts from around the world, include La Jolla Vein Care’s Dr. Fronek.  Dr. Bunke was featured in the daily congress newsletter as being the first physician to complete a specialized Fellowship program in the field of Phlebology.

La Jolla Vein Care’s medical assistants and vascular sonographers attended also to learn the most update information on a variety of vein topics including; complications in sclerotherapy, the swollen limb, thrombophilia, new anticoagulants, venous stents, compression therapy, vascular ultrasound, foam and liquid sclerotherapy, vascular malformations, lymphedema, venous system during pregnancy, venous skin changes, dvt and superficial thrombophlebitis, chronic venous insufficiency and research on specific vascular topics.

 

 

 

Before and After Photos: Spider Vein Treatment

This patient recently asked us to post his ‘before and after’ photos of his spider veins on the inner ankle (medial malleolus) following treatment here at La Jolla Vein Care.  He is a 62 year-old gentleman whose wife found the appearance of these unsightly veins a nuisance and they also caused itching. As a result, he wanted them to ‘disappear’ before summer. Four weeks after his second treatment session,  (8 weeks total) most of these diseased blue and red dilated vessels had disappeared.  He was treated with two sessions of liquid sclerotherapy using Asclera pharmaceutical grade solution. He wore his compression stockings the entire 8 weeks.

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Before and after spider vein photos at la jolla vein care.

Sclerotherapy is used to treat the small spider veins on the legs. Only a trained physician or RN/PA should administer sclerotherapy injections. Sclerotherapy usually requires more than one treatment session for best results and may take several weeks to see optimal results. The national average is 3-5 treatment sessions. A different type of sclerotherapy, called foam sclerotherapy is used to treat larger blue, reticular veins and varicose veins. This should be done under ultrasound guidance and is performed by a Medical Doctor. Read more about sclerotherapy and ultrasound-guided foam sclerotherapy at La Jolla Vein Care.com  or click here to see more La Jolla Vein Care’s before and after photos.

Beyond Saline

If you’re looking to remove spider veins or varicose veins, you may find that saline injections are infrequently used. Why? They’re unnecessary. Today, more effective solutions are available for treating damaged veins. In short, saline injections cause stinging upon injection.  The saline solution mixes with the blood in larger veins, never making contact with the vein wall.  As a result, saline injections are only effective for tiny spider veins.  If sclerotherapy failed to remove your larger veins in the past, this is probably why. The good news? More effective and painless solutions are now available. Ask a board certified vein specialist (Phlebologist) which type of solution you should you use—and see if you’re ready to move beyond saline.

Sincerely,

Executive Team

An Alternative to Surgery

Today, sclerotherapy is clearly the gold standard for removing spider and varicose veins. During this procedure, a specially trained physician injects a safe sclerosing agent directly into the blood vessel. The effectiveness of the procedure comes as a direct result of the training, experience, and judgment of the physician to make sure that the sclerosant’s volume, concentration, and exposure time are exactly right. What happens next? The solution displaces the blood in the vein, causing it to immediately appear lighter in color. The solution irritates the vein lining, causing it to collapse and blocking it from receiving more blood. Within a few weeks, the unused vein is absorbed by the body and disappears. With advancements in medicine, there’s no reason to go under the knife anymore—scleroptherpy is a safe, effective, and cost effective alternative to surgery.

Sincerely,

Executive Team

Keeping it Painless

By using sclerotherapy to remove spider and varicose veins, we’re able to minimize patient discomfort. At the injection site, patients might feel a slight burning sensation for only a few seconds. To maximize patient comfort, we use a sclerosant that was developed as a local anesthetic. To modernize the patient experience, we want to offer the most advanced treatments available—and we want to keep it painless.

Sincerely,

Executive Team

Improving Leg Circulation

We receive many inquiries about how the removal of varicose veins might impact circulation. After all, veins are conduits for transferring blood throughout the body. The good news, however, is that the removal of diseased vessels actually improves circulation because varicose veins are a burden on the circulatory system. By treating varicose veins via sclerotherapy, we eliminate only the bad veins, thus leaving the healthy veins that the body naturally uses to return blood from the heart.

Sincerely,

Executive Team