Do you have a problem with your veins, such as varicose veins, spider veins or pain? If so, you may have to see a vein specialist to get the issue corrected. There are several options and treatment methods that a vein specialist can provide in order to alleviate any discomfort you might be feeling. Learn more about this type of medical professional, what credentials he or she should have and how you should go about choosing the right one for you.
What is a vein specialist?
The official name for a vein specialist is a vascular doctor. They study the function of the veins, which are crucial to the proper transport of blood and nutrients throughout the body. If you need vein surgery, a vascular surgeon is often the type of specialist you would seek.
A phlebologist also focuses on issues involving the veins. A rheumatologist may also be able to assist with some problems involving the veins. This type of doctor specializes in treating autoimmune conditions like vasculitis. A dermatologist may be able to help with cosmetic issues involving the skin and surface veins. These various doctors are licensed to perform a variety of procedures and treatments.
Types of vein treatments available
The most common type of vein treatments are for varicose and spider veins. Varicose veins are a condition where the veins are purple or bluish and bulge visibly under the skin. Spider veins are tinier versions of varicose veins, though they don't bulge, and resemble small squiggly lines just under the surface of the skin. While spider veins are often a cosmetic issue, they could indicate other disorders of the circulatory system.
There are two common treatments for these conditions — sclerotherapy or laser therapy. With sclerotherapy, the vein specialist injects the affected veins with a liquid that causes them to eventually fade back into the skin. With laser therapy, the practitioner uses a special tool that treats the visible veins with a very strong light.
Another common vein problem is deep vein thrombosis, which is a thickening of the blood inside of the veins that could lead to clotting. This condition can be resolved with medication, physical therapy and the placement of a special filter in the veins.
Can a technician help?
It is possible for a technician or assistant practitioner to perform some vein correction services. They are often licensed to perform certain procedures at clinics and small specialized offices. Ask to see certificates of licensing for the vein specialist who is proposing to perform the procedure.
Talk to your vein specialists about the risks of the procedures involving your veins. For example, after a laser treatment there may be bruising or scarring for a while after the procedure and you will need to know what to expect during your recovery. You should also ask about possible side effects associated with sclerotherapy and other treatments.