What Are Varicose Veins? – Infographic

Varicose veins are a source of pain and embarrassment for millions of Americans. Besides being painful and unsightly they can cause swelling, heaviness in the legs, itching, and can lead to more serious conditions like blood clots and ulceration. The bulging veins seen on the surface are only the start of the problem. The cause actually arises from veins deeper in the legs.

So how does one get varicose veins? What causes them? How are they treated? The Utah varicose vein specialists at IVC have put together an infographic that answers many questions patients have about varicose veins and venous insufficiency.

  what are varicose veins

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Varicose Vein Treatment: What To Expect

The unknown can make anyone feel a little nervous! So we understand if you are feeling apprehensive for your upcoming varicose vein procedure. Sometimes having a better understanding of what takes place can ease your nerves.

Day of Procedure

varicose veins

The day of the procedure, you are encouraged to do as you normally would. You may eat and take any prescribed medications (unless instructed otherwise by the nurse practitioner at your consultation appointment). It is advised to wear loose fitting clothing as you will be leaving the office in a compression stocking and bandages. These bandages can be a bit bulky, and may not be too flattering under tight pants! Make sure to bring a 20-30mmHg, thigh-high compression stocking with you, it will be your new friend for the next week. Occasionally, a knee-high stocking may be worn post-procedure, if the treatment was below the knee only. You will be offered a relaxing medication to take before your procedure. If you are taking the medication, please arrange to have someone drive you home.


Before your procedure, you will be offered a prescription for valium. This medication will make you feel relaxed and might make you feel sleepy. We also offer nitrous oxide (laughing gas). Nitrous oxide, a gas that is often given at dentist appointments, provides a relaxing and euphoric sensation. Nitrous is a great option for those who cannot arrange for someone to drive them home after the procedure as it’s effects quickly dissipate after you stop breathing it. Nitrous sedation is an additional charge of $65. Sedation is not required for varicose vein treatment; we offer it only to help if you are feeling nervous.


Once you are brought back to the treatment area, you will be asked to undress from the waist down and change into shorts that we will provide. Your leg will then be cleaned and prepped in sterile fashion. The doctor will then begin the treatment. During ablation and ambulatory phlebectomy procedures, anesthetic is injected along the course of the target vein. Once the area is numb, the vein is treated. Sclerotherapy procedures involve injections into the target veins. Occasionally the medication causes a mild burning sensation as it moves through the vein. After each procedure we will put a compression stocking and bandages on the treated leg or legs. Learn more about varicose vein treatment

Headed Home!

Once your varicose vein treatment is completed, we will put bandages and your compression stocking on your leg. The first time’s on us! The stocking needs to be worn for two days without removing it. After two days, you may take the stocking and bandages off. At this point, it is alright to get the leg wet, unless you have had an ambulatory phlebectomy procedure. After AP you must wait a little longer, five days, for a shower. Then you must wear the stocking during the day only for five more days, a total of one week in the glamorous compression stocking. Sometimes Valium can make your memory of the procedure a little fuzzy; therefore you will be given printed instructions following your procedure. You are encouraged to resume your normal daily activities, excluding strenuous exercise and heavy lifting.

Hopefully knowing what to expect when you come in for a procedure makes it a little less stressful. We are here to help and guide you through the whole process. If you ever have questions or concerns, do not hesitate to give your Utah varicose vein treatment experts a call!