To evaluate the deep and superficial venous systems, including perforators, for evidence of valvular incompetence.How venous insufficiency is treated Treatment will depend on many factors, including the reason for the condition and your health status and history. Other factors your doctor will consider are:
- your specific symptoms
- your age
- the severity of your condition
- how well you can tolerate medications or procedures
The most common treatment for venous insufficiency is prescription compression stockings. These special elastic stockings apply pressure at the ankle and lower leg. They help improve blood flow and can reduce leg swelling. Compression stockings come in a range of prescription strengths and different lengths. Your doctor will help you decide what the best type of compression stocking is for your treatment.
Treatment for venous insufficiency can include several different strategies:
Improving blood flow
Some tips to improve your blood flow include:
- Keep your legs elevated whenever possible.
- Wear compression stockings to apply pressure to your lower legs.
- Keep your legs uncrossed when seated.
- Exercise regularly.
There are also a number of medications that may help those suffering from this condition. These include:
Diuretics: medications that draw extra fluid from your body that is then excreted through your kidneys
Anticoagulants: medications that thin the blood
Pentoxifylline (Trental): a medication that helps improve blood flow
Sometimes more serious cases of venous insufficiency require surgery. Your doctor may suggest one of the following surgery types:
- Surgical repair of veins or valves
- Removing (stripping) the damaged vein
- Minimally invasive endoscopic surgery: The surgeon inserts a thin tube with a camera on it to help see and tie off varicose veins.
Vein bypass: A healthy vein is transplanted from somewhere else in your body. This procedure is generally used only when the upper thigh is affected and only for very severe cases after nothing else has worked.
Laser surgery: This relatively new treatment uses lasers to either fade or close the damaged vein with strong surges of light in a small, specific place. It involves no surgical cuts.
This outpatient procedure (you won’t have to spend the night in the hospital) involves your doctor numbing certain spots on your leg, and then making small pricks and removing smaller varicose veins.
This treatment method is generally reserved for advanced venous insufficiency. In sclerotherapy, a chemical is injected into the damaged vein so that it’s no longer able to carry blood. Blood will return to the heart through other veins, and the damaged vein will eventually be absorbed by the body. Sclerotherapy is used to destroy small to medium veins. A chemical is injected into the damaged vein so that it’s no longer able to carry blood.
In severe cases, your doctor can use a catheter procedure for larger veins. They’ll insert a catheter (a thin tube) into the vein, heat the end of it, and then remove it. The heat will cause the vein to close and seal as the catheter is taken out.
Common indications for the performance of lower extremity venous reflux evaluation include, but are not limited to:
- Stasis dermatitis or pigmentation
- Venous stasis ulcers
- Recurrent swelling of the lower calf and ankle
- Pain or feelings of heaviness in the lower extremity
- Visible varicose veins
- Venous claudication
- Pain and edema of the lower extremities
- Preoperative evaluation for venous insufficiency
CONTRAINDICATIONS AND LIMITATIONS
Contraindications for lower extremity venous insufficiency evaluation are unlikely; however, some limitations exist
and may include the following:
- Open draining ulcers
- Severe edema and/or pain of the lower extremity
- Inability to stand for an extended length of time