THE VEIN THERAPY AT BELALLURE
With the advancements in medicine and the higher education of consumer, it is hard to find a medical condition more common than veins. For instance, millions of people in the United States suffer from symptomatic varicose veins which opens a market for health providers to practice medicine and provide a service unique to those patients.
The vein center in Belallure is created to address both the needs of the patients with symptomatic and cosmetic vein diseases throughout Lebanon and the Middle-East region. Today, many adults suffer from these diagnoses and can be treated at an outpatient level. Our commitment is to provide efficient, cost effective, affordable treatment, using the most modern techniques focusing on medicine that practices good common sense. We strive to maintain complete patient satisfaction by treating the cause of the problems as well as the symptoms while providing a way for patients to be comfortable with their appearance and be symptom free.
An estimated 30-60% of adults suffer from venous disease and the incidence of cases increases with age. There are two levels of patients who require treatment of venous disease. One is the patient who suffers from varicose and spider veins which require cosmetic correction. The second level of the patient population suffers from symptomatic venous disease, and wish to seek relief and advice of a physician. The mission of the Vein Center is to accommodate these patients while providing excellence in medical care which is the foundation at Belallure and its our values.
What are varicose veins?
Varicose veins are enlarged veins that can be blue, red or flesh colored. They are often raised above the skin on legs and look like twisted bulging cords. Varicose veins occur when the valves in the veins that regulate blood flow direction from the legs toward the heart no longer function, causing blood to pool. Often misunderstood as a cosmetic issue, varicose veins can sometimes progress to CVI, which is a more serious condition.
What are spider veins?
Spider veins, which often cover the legs, are damaged veins that appear to be similar to varicose veins, only thinner. Appearing red or blue in color and like thin spider webs or branches, these veins are closer to the surface of the skin and can spread over a range of areas. Unlike varicose veins, spider veins are typically not raised above the skin’s surface. Spider veins can be treated with sclerotherapy or laser treatment. Though spider veins may be associated with varicose veins or CVI, the issue is seen as cosmetic and treatment is generally regarded as elective.
CORRECTION OF VARICOSE VEINS
Despite the fact that insurance do not offer coverage for these types of treatments, the demand for cosmetic corrective services are still on the rise.
Diagnosis: At the Vein Center each patient will undergo a complete examination to assess the symptoms and the underlying problem which is affecting the quality of life for the patient. After careful examination, various outpatient studies and tests may be performed to include an ultrasound examination which provides an accurate road map to guide the treatment decisions for each patient.
Venous Insufficiency and Reflux
This major factor which produces vein diseases is venous insufficiency and reflux. Under normal conditions, blood in the legs always flows upstream towards the heart. When veins or their valves are diseased, they allow blood with its accompanying high pressure, to reflux back into the legs. The modern solution is to interrupt the site of reflux and direct the blood to healthy veins. Conservative therapy, such as compression stockings, should be used initially for treatment. In addition a combination of pharmaco-therapy can be added.
Spider, Reticular and Varicose Veins
Spider veins are the most superficial manifestation of vein diseases. Often, each spider vein has a feeding vein, unseen, which transmits higher than normal pressures, and makes the spider veins visible.
Treatments: In the past, the only treatment available for patients with diagnoses of the veins was the stripping of the varicose veins. Today, new techniques allow for the exact diagnosis and treatment which are less invasive and can be performed at the outpatient level.
Sclerotherapy remains the mainstay of eliminating spider veins and certain varicose veins. A tiny needle is used to inject the vein, causing irritation and closure. Several treatments may be needed over the course of several weeks.
- Laser therapy
Laser therapy is an effective non-invasive way to treat reticular and spider veins. It does not involve needles and is well tolerated.
Can varicose veins and CVI be prevented?
For mild forms of venous disease, lifestyle changes may be recommended to control existing symptoms and prevent others. The following measures may help control varicose veins and CVI:
· Manage blood pressure and body weight
· Exercise regularly, focusing on exercises that work your legs (run or walk)
· Elevate your legs whenever possible
· Avoid prolonged standing or sitting
· Wear compression stockings while at work
· Avoid clothes that are tight around the waist, thighs or legs
· Strengthen calf muscles and avoid shoes that limit use of calf muscles (i.e., high heels)
· Eat a diet low in salt and rich in high-fiber foods
This procedure entails inserting a very small tube called a catheter into the vein and delivering radiofrequency or laser energy to the vein wall, causing the vein to shrink, collapse, and seal shut. Once it’s sealed, healthy veins take over and redirect blood flow back toward the heart. Patients have reported little, if any, pain during the procedure, and most return to normal activity in a day.
This procedure entails making a very small incision overlying the varicose vein and removing segments of it. Through various incisions, the network of varicosities can be excised. Patients tolerate the procedure well with minimal bruising which resolves over several days and most return to normal activity in a few days.
Incompetent Perforator Veins
Perforator veins connect the superficial veins just below the surface of the skin to the deep veins within the muscles). When perforator veins are said to be “incompetent,” this means that they do not function properly, and so are unable to perform their work – pumping blood between superficial and deep veins – as they should. The valves that do not function properly lead to damage in the form of pooled blood just under the skin, which can lead to a host of problems.
Symptoms: Common symptoms of incompetent perforator veins include varicose and spider veins just under the skin, darkened and thickened skin which is tender to the touch and bruises easily pain, tingling and itching, feelings of heaviness or tiredness in the legs, swelling or puffiness in the legs and ankles. The skin in the most adversely affected areas can ultimately ulcerate, leading to a wound that does not heal on its own.
Treatment: The goal of therapy is to decrease the pressure – exerted by improper blood flow and pooling – on the skin and in the veins just below the skin. Wearing compression stockings can achieve this goal. Another option is to percutaneously ablate the abnormally functioning perforator vein. This is a minimally invasive, same-day procedure that treats the cause of venous ulceration due to incompetent perforator veins. Its success rate appears to be higher than compression stockings alone.