How Do I Talk To My Doctor About Varicose Veins?
As an ultrasound technician, I have the opportunity to spend a good amount of time with our patients. Something I hear over and over again from our patients is they have been suffering from varicose veins for some time and they are frustrated their doctors did not send them to seek treatment sooner.
I have seen so many patients who have been amazed by the relief they receive after vein treatment. Another common thing that I hear is I wish I would have known about this sooner. With that in mind I have decided to share some ways in which you can talk to your doctor about varicose veins.
Discuss Your Varicose Vein Symptoms
First thing that you need to do is speak up! Your doctor wants to know about your symptoms. Before you visit your doctor take some notes on how your feeling. Make notes on how your legs or pelvis feel (tired, achy, heavy, etc) and if there is anything that you do that makes it feel worse or better (standing, sitting, exercise, etc). Always remember you can never give too much information when you are trying to diagnose a reason for symptoms.
Explore Treatment Options
Second step is to discuss treatment options. When it comes to varicose veins there are treatment options. If you have pelvic varicose veins you could do treatment through hysterectomy or you could have a procedure done where varicose veins are closed in the pelvis. Within the leg there are a few treatments ranging from injections or laser on spider veins to heating and closing the vein and potentially removing varicose veins. Sometimes varicose veins are connected to open ulcerations on legs. When there are open ulcerations on the leg sometimes treatment with wound care needs to be part of the discussion.
Third and final suggestion is discussing lifestyle changes. Sometimes you are not ready for treatment of varicose veins and you would like to treat conservatively. This can be accomplished thru suggestions for low impact exercises, prescriptions for compression socks, ideas to alternate standing and sitting at work, or similar conservative actions.
In the end the best suggestion I can give is to never be afraid to begin an honest conversation with your doctor. Never hesitate, a doctor can not treat what they do not know as a problem.