What’s the Difference between Vein Treatments?

January 1, 2017

Difference in Vein TreatmentsThere are many ways to eliminate spider and varicose veins today, which can make it difficult to know which treatment will serve your needs best. The right procedure for you will depend on the type of veins you want to treat, their size and their location. To help you understand the difference between the vein treatments now available at the Vein Center of Florida & South Baldwin, we have put together a few basics to help you distinguish between all of them.

Spider Vein Options

Spider veins are smaller, visible veins that often appear in a network on the surface of the skin. Cosmetic sclerotherapy is considered the “gold standard” for treating these vessels. The procedure injects a special solution directly into the visible veins, which seals the veins closed. The sealed vein collapses and is reabsorbed by the body over time. Blood reroutes naturally to healthy veins nearby so vascular function is not negatively affected by the procedure.

Procedures for Varicose Veins

Varicose veins are larger than spider veins and often protrude above the skin’s surface. They are usually found on the lower leg and behind the knee. These veins may also be accompanied by aching and swelling if the underlying condition that leads to the visible vessels has advanced.

There are more treatment options for varicose veins today. At the Vein Center of Florida & South Baldwin, we offer the following procedures:

Foam Sclerotherapy

This is an updated version of the traditional sclerotherapy technique that allows the injectable treatment to be used on larger varicose veins. Instead of injecting the liquid solution, this procedure uses a foaming agent that has a similar consistency to shaving cream. The thicker texture displaces blood inside the vessel so the vein walls can be sealed closed. Ultrasound imaging is used to guide the foam solution into the vessel and then monitors the vein after treatment to ensure it closes properly.

Endovenous Laser Treatment (EVLT)

Another effective option in treating larger varicose veins is an innovative therapy known as endovenous laser treatment or EVLT. This procedure uses a small fiber that is inserted into the visible vein using a very small incision. The fiber delivers laser energy into the vein, which seals the vein closed in a similar fashion to sclerotherapy. This is the most common treatment prescribed to patients suffering from larger varicose veins.

Ambulatory Phlebectomy

For some patients, the actual removal of a varicose vein is the best treatment option. Fortunately, this process can be completed with much less discomfort and downtime than surgical treatments of the past. Ambulatory phlebectomy uses very small incisions made along the length of the vein and a special tool that grasps the vessel and removes it from the leg in small sections. This procedure is often recommended to patients that have vessels too large to treat with sclerotherapy, but too small to safely treat with EVLT.

Vein Treatment Benefits

No matter which vein treatment turns out to be the best choice for you, you can rest assured your procedure will be minimally invasive and involve almost no downtime afterward. We perform all of our varicose vein treatments using local anesthetic and patients are able to return home or to other activities as soon as the procedure is over. Because the vein is completely eliminated, the results are considered permanent.

Don’t let too many choices in varicose vein treatments hinder you from getting the relief you need from painful vessels. Dr. Jimenez will assess your condition and help you select the best treatment option for you. To learn more, contact the Vein Center of Florida & South Baldwin today at 800-910-8346.