Varicose Vein Treatments – Bellingham
Bayside Vein and Laser Center provides the most comfortable and effective varicose vein treatments in Bellingham WA. All of these procedures can be performed in our procedure room using local anesthesia. Options are available for minimal sedation, if desired. Dr. Taylor and his staff will take time in your first visit to thoroughly explain the recommended treatment options and answer all your questions.
We offer a full range of effective varicose vein and spider vein treatments available in Bellingham. In your initial visit we will review your medical history and conduct a varicose vein diagnostic ultrasound workup. Our ultrasound lab is accredited, providing you with the most diagnostic expertise available in Northwest Washington.
For your convenience, we can do the ultrasound scan right in your exam room and Dr. Taylor will evaluate those varicose vein imaging results immediately. This will help him determine the extent of your vein insufficiency and which procedure (or combination of procedures) is best for your condition.
Varicose Vein Laser Treatment
Endovenous Laser Ablation is a laser procedure to treat varicose vein (the saphenous veins). Dr. Taylor anesthetizes the vein and inserts a very thin laser fiber optic into the vein through a needle without requiring any incision. The laser energy collapses the vein wall and seals it shut. As the fiber optic is gradually withdrawn, the vein is sealed along its full length, thus removing the underlying cause of the varicosities. The closed varicose vein shrinks and fades away over the next few weeks. The body automatically re-routes the blood flow through other veins. The procedure takes about 30 – 45 minutes and does not require general anesthesia.
Patients can walk immediately after the varicose vein procedure and can return to most normal activities the next day. Our state-of-the-art technology provides maximum comfort and fast recovery for our patients.
Phlebectomy (Vein Removal)
Phlebectomy is a method of surgically removing a varicose vein using local anesthesia. Tiny puncture-like incisions are made in the skin along the vein and it is removed with an instrument resembling a crochet hook. The incisions are so small that stitches are not required and there is usually no visible scarring. It can take from thirty minutes to two hours, depending on how many veins are being removed.
Following the procedure, the patient can walk immediately. Compression stockings are recommended for two weeks following the varicose vein procedure as well as limited activity for a few weeks to facilitate healing. This procedure often requires elimination of the saphenous vein with the EVLA procedure.
Sclerotherapy (Spider Vein Injections)
This method is popular for eliminating spider veins (<1 mm in diameter) and reticular veins (1-3 mm in diameter). It is especially effective for treating veins at an early stage to prevent further complications. Sclerotherapy can also eliminate “feeder” veins that could create future varicosities or spider veins.
A tiny needle injects a solution into the veins. It feels similar to a mosquito bite. The solution causes the vein to shrink and it gradually disappears as the body absorbs the tissue over the next few weeks. The body automatically re-routes the blood through other veins, improving circulation.
A typical session takes approximately thirty minutes. Normal activities can be resumed right away. A patient may require one or several sclerotherapy sessions for a given vein area. This procedure is sometimes used in combination with other treatments for optimum results.
How will my blood get back to the heart after the varicose veins are removed?
The varicose veins were causing backward flow of the blood and interfering with the normal return of blood to the heart. By removing the varicose veins, we improve your circulation because the body automatically re-routes the blood through healthy veins, unhindered by the back flow problem. You should no longer feel the tiredness, heaviness, and aching.
What if I choose not to treat my varicose vein?
The degree of consequences will vary from patient to patient. Without realizing it, many patients become less active as their symptoms increase, and the inactivity can contribute to other health issues.
Untreated, the symptoms will persist and will probably increase over time. Varicose veins can develop into more serious conditions such as chronic edema (swelling), phlebitis (inflammation), leg ulcers (open sores), and thrombosis (blood clots).
Medical insurance usually applies to the first consultation appointment, including the diagnostic ultrasound lab procedures. Most insurance also covers vein treatment when it alleviates leg pain, heaviness, aching, swelling, or breakdown of the skin. Deductibles and co-pays are the patient’s responsibility. We are contracted with most major insurance companies. Some plans require a referral from your primary care physician. Most plans will require you to wear compression stockings for a period of weeks prior to their approval for the procedure.