Laser treatment for varicose veins proves that sometimes, modern medicine gets it right…
Millions of men and women are bothered by the discomfort and embarrassment of spider veins on their legs or faces. NHS Heroes These are small red, blue and sometimes purple blood vessels that appear on the surface of the skin, usually without any symptoms. Occasionally, if the spider veins grow in size or cover a larger surface area they may feel some minor discomfort.
A varicose vein is an entirely different animal.
These are tortuous large veins that have lost the function of the one-way valves that keep the blood from pooling.
Without those valves, the blood pools in the veins and decreases the ability to adequately send oxygen to the tissue and remove waste from a specific area of a leg.
The unsightly and twisted veins are often found on the thighs, backs of the calves, or the inside of the leg. During pregnancy, varicose veins can even form around the vagina and buttocks.
Not so long ago, patients with varicose veins were instructed to sit with their feet raised as much as possible during the day. Then, manufacturers came up with support hose to help keep the blood from pooling, allowing it to move along the venous system towards the heart. Next, surgeons began using a veins stripping technique where the vein itself was removed from the body.
Sclerotherapy, used since the 1930‘s, is still considered one of the less invasive treatments for varicose veins. An injection of a salt solution is given directly into the vein (s). The solution irritates the lining of the blood vessels, which then swell and stick together making the blood clot. Eventually, the blood vessels turn into scar tissue and the varicose fades away.
Laser treatments are used to kill the varicose vein (s). The heat from the laser damages the vein; Scar tissue forms, closes the vein and without a blood source, the vein dies. Eventually the vein disappears.
Simple laser treatments are used to treat spider veins and small varicose veins, if they’re right under the surface of the skin. They are safe and effective and are scheduled 6 to 12 weeks apart.
Endovenous (inside the vein) laser treatment is much newer technology, and becoming more available for treating larger varicose veins in the legs.
This procedure involves making a tiny puncture on the skin and passing a laser fiber through a thin tube into the vein. The procedure is less painful and has a shorter recovery time. Usually only very light sedation or a local anesthetic is needed, and the procedure only takes about an hour to complete. Reports of any major complications are very rare.
After the procedure, patients wear compression stockings for at least a week (sometimes longer), but are able to return to their normal routines immediately.
Patients are encouraged to exercise regularly and are highly discouraged or forbidden from bed rest, hot baths, heavy lifting or long travel for about 1 to two weeks.
The most obvious benefit of laser surgery is that it is relatively non-invasive, without the need for a surgical incision. It is more effective than the traditional “vein stripping” and is credited with less pain and fewer complications during recovery. The procedure leaves almost no scars and patients are usually able to return to daily activities immediately.
You should make an appointment with your healthcare provider if you experience any of the following symptoms:
- A vein has become swollen, red, very tender or warm to the touch
- There are sores or a rash on your leg or near the ankle
- The skin on your ankle and calf has become thick and changed color
- A varicose veins begins to bleed
- Your leg symptoms are interfering with daily activities
Of course, prevention is easier than having to undergo surgery. So, even if you don’t have varicose veins right now, or aren’t having a problem with the ones you have, there are steps you can take to keep them from getting worse. These will be the topic of the next article.more ...
Ok, so we’ve been trying to get Mom a day off every week or so. This usually happens on a Tuesday or Thursday and I either catch up on sleep or sanity, whichever I am in greatest need of. Gather It’s making a big difference in the plan for self recovery. Because of it, these are some of the things that are happening:
1. I am actively trying to get enough sleep to keep me from having flashbacks to the movie Natural Born Killers. Family? You’re Welcome.
2. I have resumed any kind of a skincare routine and I am wearing make-up a little more often. People I meet randomly at Target? You’re Welcome.
3. And jewelery. It’s good to decorate yourself, right? It says you care.
4. I went to get my hair done. I went before my usual bi-annual due date. I made myself do it…and I wished again that I was one of those women for whom maintenance was non-negotiable. (I tried to make myself into one of those ladies after the triplets were born. Tried to develop a sense of entitlement. It clearly didn’t take, for reasons the Dragonlady pointed out, we were not raised to love ourselves that way. Probably so.)
5. I am a slightly better parent and a much better person. Finding your will to live can do that for a person.
So, I went for the hair appointment, for which I was both late and early (I am seriously considering trademarking the ability to make that happen). Then, sitting in my car, I decided to do something I never, ever do. I decided to take a picture of myself. I have long refused to be photographed. It has never been a comfortable process for me. So I decided to. I used the iPod Touch that is currently on restriction from one of the children and enjoying itself in my purse (watch how my Instagram contribution goes way down when this kid comes off restriction), and I took my picture. Here’s how that played out:
Pose, and…Snap. Hang on. My eyes look weird in that one. I’ll try it again. Snap. Huh, again with the eyes. Do over. Snap. What the? Snap. !! Snap. Snap. Snap. Snap. Snap. Snap!!!!!! Ahhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh! What the hell is going on here?!! My eyes are TWO DIFFERENT SIZES! Is it a mini stroke? Has my face always been lacking in symmetry? Why didn’t anyone ever tell me!! Sweet Lord! I am the Elephant Man! And I am now sitting in the parking lot outside my hairdressers hyperventilating into a brawn paper lunch bag.
The good news if that my panic disorder is rather perfectly matched up with an amazing inability to focus and a piss-poor attitude, so after a few phone calls to take a poll on my new lazy eye situation, I am able to get back to the task at hand. A before and after shot for the hairdresser. In case I need to sue or something. Ready for it. Try not to look away…(Do you see it? The lazy eye? There’ll be more of that later) Then, feeling all adventurous as I have been since sleep was reintroduced, I went in and tried to convince my hairdresser to make me look like this… Sadly, she has far more common sense than I do. She made me think that we were going to get all wild and crazy, and then she pulled the old switcheroo at the end. And she did this instead… I think I’ll be able to work with this, despite the fact that it’s not as dramatic as I was hoping
My next stop was to go and put some more money down to pay off for the restoration of my brother’s guitar. It’s the right thing to do. Buying a new camera for myself is not. Not yet. Too many other things that need the money. But I think about the guitar sometimes, the lone manifestation of a life that lasted a mere 23 years, one that ended so long ago that almost no body that I live my life with today even knows he existed, and I wonder if I shouldn’t just let it go. Sometimes it seems to limit my memories of him more than restore them. This guitar, and it’s a beautiful instrument, sat unplayed, in it’s case for 20 years. Will it go for another 20 years marking an absence instead of having a purpose? It just seems as though hope should swim more, and life should live towards the future, including the short one that he lived. It’s hard to know what to do here, and not everyone is as unattached to material things as I’ve become. So I did what a good caretaker does, I had it fully restored, all original hardware, and in a couple of months, it’ll come home and…wait I guess, to see if anyone in the next generation will play it.
Anyway, after that, just to tease myself, I went to the camera store I’d been wanting to visit. I’ve researched different cameras to death on the internet and at this point, I just wanted to hold a couple in my hand to see what felt right. That way, I can start a savings fund for it. I liked this one…But I get the feeling my budget will be screaming by the time I get to this… So, there’s the target. But here’s where the story get a bit interesting. I picked up what had to be one of the worst salesmen ever. I really wanted to buy, even something used just to start learning on. He could have put something in my hands that day and attached me to his store for the rest of my camera needs. He could have created that relationship. Instead, he tried to sell me his most expensive cameras based on, get this, my apparently freakishly large hands. I will need the right size camera for my giant hands. Serious? O.o she went with her crazy, mismatched eyes Not a single question on how I intended to use it, what features was I seeking. He never made any effort to discover my price range or my needs. In fact, he kind of made me feel like I shouldn’t even be in his store if I didn’t have money to burn. Is that the norm for the camera world? The good news is that the business card he gave me lists his days off, so I’ll be sure to find someone better on those days.
And finally, when I couldn’t bring myself to go home just yet I decided to investigate a new place that just opened. I was drawn in by the name, but I’m going back again and again until I’ve tried everything on the menu. Go Here…I went with the simplest thing possible, cause…well, I wussed out. And it was the best thing I’ve ever done (your know, in regards to tacos). Corn tortilla, carnitas, salsa, cheese and guacamole, onions and cilantro. That basic. And it was like angels cried taco tears in my mouth. I am going back for everything on the menu. One order at a time. I want one right now as a matter of fact. Chronic Tacos! Let the holding out begin!
In the meantime, I leave with my newly discovered Hunchback of Notre Dame look. Seriously, what is up with my eye size here?!!more ...
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