Non-Surgical Treatment of Peripheral Venous Disease
541-222-7218; 888-240-6484 (toll free)
Your diagnosis and degree of disease will determine which type of treatment your doctor recommends.
Home treatment includes:
- Elevating the affected leg above your heart to help pooled blood drain properly.
- Avoiding long periods of standing or sitting. If you must sit for a long period, stretch and flex your legs every 5 minutes or so to keep blood flowing.
- Wearing elastic compression stockings that squeeze the veins and keep the blood flowing in your legs, which makes it more difficult for blood clots to form.
Depending on your condition, your doctor may recommend taking an oral anticoagulant medication such as Coumadin to prevent blood from clotting. Coumadin and other blood thinners prevent new blood clots from forming and stop existing clots from growing.
If a vein is narrowed or damaged, a non-surgical treatment called “angioplasty and stenting” may be called for. Angioplasty and stenting is a common and safe procedure best known as a treatment for heart problems. It is also used to open up blocked or clotted veins to increase blood flow.
Here’s how it works: A vascular surgeon or interventional radiologist makes a small cut in a vein in your arm or groin area. Then, using x-rays for guidance, the surgeon threads a narrow, flexible tube called a catheter through the vein into the blockage. Through the catheter, the physician passes a small mesh tube called a stent. A tiny balloon is placed inside the stent and inflated. The pressure from the inflated balloon opens the stent and sets it in the vein. The balloon is then deflated and removed while the stent settles in the vein to keep it open and the blood flowing.
Sclerotherapy is an effective, common and safe procedure to treat varicose veins that can be done in your doctor’s office without anesthesia. It usually takes between 5 and 30 minutes. In sclerotherapy, a thin, flexible tube called a catheter is inserted into the veins. Through the tube, the doctor injects a chemical substance called a sclerosant that causes the veins to close and scar over. This forces the blood to reroute itself and flow through healthier nearby veins.
Contact us at the number above to learn more about these and other services available at Oregon Heart & Vascular Institute.