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Get a Leg Up on Varicose Veins!

 

Vein problems are a very common problem in the US. Over 80 million Americans suffer with some sort of venous disorder. Symptoms range from itchy spider veins to painful varicose veins to venous stasis ulcers that require months of wound therapy in order to heal. The good news is that help is available here in Winfield!

 

Dynamic Duo

Dr. McClure works with ultrasound technologist “Sono-Mike” to perform endovenous laser ablation and ultrasound guided sclerotherapy procedures.

Change your Legs, Change your Life!

Why should I choose McClure Medical Practice to treat my vein problems?

Dr. Shelley A. McClure is a Diplomat of the American Board of Venous and Lymphatic Medicine, as she has demonstrated excellence in the knowledge of vein care by meeting rigorous educational standards and by passing a formal board exam. She has chosen to expand her practice expertise into the area of vein care because this is an area of medicine that has not been addressed well by the medical system in the past. She is excited to be able to offer minimally invasive, effective vein treatments to the citizens of Cowley County and surrounding areas.

What are varicose veins?

Veins are vessels that carry blood to the heart.  As the blood is pushed up, one-way valves close to prevent back flow of the blood.  When the valves are weak or damaged,  the blood can pool in the vessel, causing it to swell.  This forms a varicose vein.

What problems do varicose veins cause?

Although varicose veins are not always symptomatic, they can result in leg pain, fatigue, aching, swelling, and itching or burning.  Inflammation, due to lack of oxygen,  may cause dermatitis, skin changes, or in particularly severe cases, a venous ulcer.  Vein disorders are not always visible.  Diagnostic ultrasound is the best test to determine the cause and severity of venous problems.

Who is at risk for varicose veins?

Varicose veins are often genetic, and are also three times more likely to occur in women than men.  Hormonal changes, such as those that occur during menses and also during pregnancy, worsen vein problems.  Aging and occupations that require standing or sitting for prolonged periods of time are additional risk factors.

When do varicose veins need to be treated?

People who experience any of the previously mentioned symptoms should know what options are available. Temporary improvement is usually noted with conservative treatment.  Long-term improvement is noted with corrective treatment.

What are the treatment options?

Conservative treatment measures include use of compression stockings; elevation of  the legs above the heart; daily exercise; and avoidance of prolonged standing or sitting.

Corrective treatment measures available through our office include endovenous laser ablation, ultrasound guided sclerotherapy, and sclerotherapy of spider veins.

Endovenous laser ablation

Endovenous laser ablation is a state of the art, minimally invasive treatment for varicose veins.  We perform this procedure in our office and it takes about an hour.  No incisions are necessary.  The entire procedure is done using ultrasound visualization and local anesthesia.  The laser fiber is placed inside the damaged vein and laser energy is then used to seal the vein closed.  A compression stocking is placed and patients may return to work the next day.  This treatment has a very high success rate..

Ultrasound guided sclerotherapy

Ultrasound guided sclerotherapy is a minimally invasive treatment for varicose veins.  The ultrasound is used to visualize the abnormal vein and then a chemical sclerosant is injected into the vein.  The sclerosant causes the vein to collapse and seal shut.  This procedure is also performed in the office and requires approximately 30 minutes.  A compression stocking is placed and patients generally return to normal activities immediately.  This treatment has a very high success rate.

Sclerotherapy

Sclerotherapy of surface (spider) veins is done by using a tiny needle to inject a dilute sclerosant medicine into the vein.  This causes the treated veins to collapse and close.  Typical treatment sessions last for 30 minutes during which time multiple veins are injected.   Compression stockings are placed and there is generally no interruption of   normal activities. This treatment is generally considered cosmetic.

Which treatment is right for me?

A comprehensive duplex ultrasound evaluation, which is performed in our office, will provide detailed information regarding your veins.  This will allow Dr. McClure to formulate a treatment plan with you.  She will counsel you as to which treatments she recommends as well as the approximate number of visits that will be necessary.

What types of results are expected?

With the proper diagnosis and treatment of varicose veins, the results are generally very good  However, new varicose veins may continue to develop throughout one’s life.  Typically, successful vein treatment requires a combination of the therapies discussed above.

What type of complications may occur with vein treatment?

Serious complications of vein treatment are rare.  They may include blood clots, allergic reactions to medications or skin burns from the laser or the sclerosant.  Minor complications such as bruising, swelling, soreness or reddish blushing of the skin are more common.  These are generally self-limited and resolve without additional treatment.  Most patients tolerate treatment well and are quite satisfied with their results.

Does insurance cover this type of treatment?

Most insurers cover treatment for vein conditions that are deemed medically necessary.  Commonly,  insurance companies require a period of conservative therapy prior to covering the corrective treatment.  Cosmetic treatments (for spider veins) generally are not covered by insurance.

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