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Many people are troubled by unsightly and/or painful veins in their legs. When leg veins become enlarged and dilated they can become visible on the surface of the skin and they are termed surface veins. These surface veins can range from small thin veins (spider veins) to large thick veins (varicose veins).
Spider veins are smaller blood vessels that occur on the surface of the skin. The term spider refers to the vein’s “spidery” appearance like an intricate network of roads you would find on a map. Spider veins are unsightly and can look even look like permanent bruises.
For more information visit our page on Spider Veins
Varicose veins are larger blue blood vessels that occur on the surface of the skin. When more severe they can protrude excessively from the skin to form grape-like bumps. Varicose veins are typically formed from underlying deeper vein problems and can occur at any age but usually worsen as we get older.
For more information visit our page on Varicose Veins
In the past Surgical Stripping of Varicose Veins was a very common operation, but in modern leg vein practices surgery has become largely obsolete. This is because of the development of very effective non-surgical alternatives that can be safely performed in the clinic rather than hospital, without anaesthetic and with minimal downtime. The treatment of Varicose Veins involves treating veins below the surface of the skin and to do this without surgery involves the use of ultrasound technology to guide the treatment. These ultrasound guided procedures are sometimes collectively called EndoVenous treatments. The ultrasound can guide a fine needle to inject a solution to seal off the vein and this is called Ultrasound Guided Sclerotherapy (abbreviated as UGS). The ultrasound can also guide a small catheter inserted inside the vein which can be used to deliver heat to the inside of the Varicose Vein to shut down and close off the leaky valves. The heat to seal off the Varicose vein can be generated by a Laser, in which case it is called EndoVenous Laser Therapy ( abbreviated as EVLT). The necessary heat to seal off deep veins can also be generated by a Radiofrequency device, in which case it is called the VENEFIT or CLOSUREFAST procedure. Spider veins can be treated directly on the surface of the skin without the need for ultrasound guidance. There are 3 methods of effectively removing Spider Leg Veins
1. Unwanted Leg Veins are a very common condition found in both Women and Men and they can vary greatly in size and colour from tiny red spider veins to large blue varicose veins.
2. Treatments are generally sought due to symptoms such as aching or swelling, unsightly appearance and to prevent future health problems or complications.
3. The appropriate treatment option is best determined after a specialised Leg Vein Consultation and usually requires ultrasound scanning.
4. With modern technology nearly all Leg Veins can be treated in a clinic without hospital, surgery or downtime. The optimal treatment varies depending on the size of veins, the area being treated and whether there are any underlying deep vein problems.
5. The 3 main modern non-surgical treatment methods are Sclerotherapy, Laser therapy or Radiofrequency. Choice requires balancing the simplest and easiest treatment with the treatment that will give the best long term results.
6. Successful management of leg veins typically requires follow up maintenance treatments. If you have a tendency to develop leg veins in the first instance, there will be a tendency for more veins to develop in the future.
7. Cost and out of pocket expenses vary substantially between different treatment options. Some vein treatments can be more cost effective than others and this is something you need to discuss with a doctor experienced in the full range of leg vein treatment options.