Your legs have several veins, including superficial veins – those located near the surface. They are about a half-inch below the skin. These veins, like all veins in your legs, have one-way valves that keep blood pumping up toward your heart instead of back down your legs. You can develop varicose veins if you have high blood pressure, stand for a long period of time, sit for a long period of time, or have an inactive lifestyle. You are also at a higher risk of developing varicose veins if you have a family history of this condition.
Testing for Varicose Veins
Your doctor will conduct a physical exam to check for swelling in your legs. You may have to describe the pain or ache in your legs. The doctor may recommend a venous Doppler ultrasound of your leg to check the blood flow. This test can also help detect blood clots in your legs.
Treating Varicose Veins
Treatments for varicose veins vary widely, depending on several factors, including the severity of the issue and the amount of pain varicose veins cause. In most cases, treatment for varicose veins is outpatient. Treatments include:
Self-care may include raising your legs when resting and exercising. These activities help reduce the pain of varicose veins and could prevent them from worsening.
Often, doctors recommend wearing compression stockings at first, especially if the varicose veins aren’t too severe. These stockings squeeze your legs to help the leg muscles and veins work more efficiently when moving your blood.
Compression stockings have different strengths, depending on the brand. Doctors may also prescribe compression stockings, which could be covered by insurance.
Surgery and Other Procedures
When compression stockings and self-care do not work, doctors may recommend surgery or other procedures, including:
- Sclerotherapy: Injections that cause the veins to scar and close.
- Laser Treatment: Lasers send strong light bursts into the vein to treat varicose veins.
- Catheter-Based Procedures: These procedures may use radiofrequency or lasers and are typically used on larger varicose veins. The doctor inserts a thin tube into the vein. He or she then heats the tip of the catheter with radiofrequency or energy from a laser. The heat collapses the vein and seals it shut as the doctor pulls the catheter out.
- High Ligation and Vein Stripping: Tying off and removing the vein.
- Ambulatory Phlebectomy: Removing smaller veins through a series of skin punctures.
Where to Find Treatment for Varicose Veins in Sherman Oaks, CA
The LA Vein Center serves the Sherman Oaks area in California. To find out whether varicose vein treatment can help you with leg pain, talk to one of our doctors at the LA Vein Center. To arrange a consultation, please call 818-325-0400.