In Part 2 of our discussion, we discussed the breakdown of the vein valves and how this vein condition, or disease, results in symptoms and signs. This last part of our series will cover treatment options available when we do recognize we have vein disease and steps to take to prevent it.
Finding a Vein Specialist
At this point, the most important first step has already been taken. You have recognized that you either probably have venous disease already or you have a strong family history of vein problems and you are at risk.
The next step is to seek out a competent vein specialist who has passed theBoard Certification Examination in Venous and Lymphatic Disease [formerly Board Certification Examination in Phlebology]. Such an individual will understand the causes and appropriate treatment of vein problems.
The Importance of Support Hose
We can’t do anything about what we were born with, that’s just the luck of the draw. But we can be smart. If we have a good chance of having a genetic predisposition toward developing vein problems, we can read and become knowledgeable on the subject. Armed with this knowledge we can then go after the cause of most vein problems—gravity.
We cannot escape gravity, but we can fight gravity. The most effective way to fight gravity is to wear support hose during the day. The kind of support hose I am talking about are not the kind that you pick up at Wal-Mart or see advertised on TV.
Correct support hose are the proper fit, proper length, and proper strength. To get this combination usually involves being measured by an experienced member of the vein specialist’s staff in order to get it right. If you are tall, or spend a lot of time standing or sitting for long periods, or are female, or are overweight, or have a heart condition, or have had a serious lower extremity injury or operation, or have had a blood clot—then you are at much higher risk for development of vein disease than average.
Treatment Options for Vein Disease
If you already have vein disease then you need an appropriate ultrasound exam on your lower extremity veins. Some veins with bad valves can be safely destroyed and will bring the patient’s venous pressure down to normal. Other veins will need to be treated with support stockings.
Making some alterations in lifestyle can always improve the venous condition. Weight loss, exercise, avoidance of prolonged standing and sitting whenever possible, recognition of other factors contribution to venous hypertension, and wearing of properly fitting support stockings all can improve vein health.
Dr. Robert Ruess has over 30 years of experience in the treatment of vein disease. Schedule an appointment with Five Star Vein Institute in Las Vegas or Mesquite, Nevada to discuss your vein health with Dr. Ruess.