Warning Signs and Diagnosing Varicose Vein Disease

Warning Signs and Diagnosing Varicose Vein Disease

Learn the warning signs and why a proper diagnosis of varicose vein disease is so important.

Do you get cramps in your legs overnight or have restless legs? Are your legs often itchy for no apparent reason? The cause of your discomfort may have been misdiagnosed as neuropathy or another cause when the actual cause is varicose veins.

Some other medical conditions may present many of the same symptoms. A vein specialist has the experience and technology required for an accurate diagnosis.

The only way to accurately diagnose varicose vein disease is with a reflux ultrasound examination by an experienced vein specialist. When it comes to your vein health, a proper diagnosis is essential so that the issue isn’t over-treated or under-treated.


A Reassuring Word About Varicose Veins

Varicose veins are rarely a serious medical condition. In fact, millions of Americans have varicose veins. The Cleveland Clinic reports that 1 in every 3 adults has varicose veins. For many, they are purely an aesthetic problem. Other times, varicose veins cause annoying symptoms that will relieved by, but don’t require immediate medical attention.

Still, for some, varicose veins can cause chronic venous insufficiency. This is a dangerous medical condition related to blood circulation. The good news is a vein specialist can correctly diagnose and treat it.


More About Chronic Venous Insufficiency

Chronic venous insufficiency is not an uncommon problem for people who have varicose veins. Cleveland Clinic also reports that 1 in every 50 adults with varicose veins eventually develops chronic venous insufficiency.

Damaged veins cause chronic vein insufficiency. Leg veins keep blood flowing back to your heart. But when chronic venous insufficiency occurs, blood flows improperly or not at all.

Learn the warning signs and seek a vein specialist for a proper diagnosis of  varicose veins and venous insufficiency.


Blood flow in normal leg veins vs blood flow in varicose veins


With chronic venous insufficiency, veins can no longer open and close to properly regulate blood flow; blood pools in the veins instead of flowing toward the heart. Blood may even flow backwards.

The pooling blood creates extra pressure on the vein. The result can be uncomfortable swelling, ulcers, insufficient blood flow, and possible life-threatening blood clots.

This condition is most common in people over the age 50, with increasing risk as you further age.

Read more about chronic vein insufficiency.


Medical Conditions That Can Mimic Varicose Veins

There are other medical conditions that present many of the same symptoms of varicose veins.

They include:

  • Tendonitis (inflammation of the tendons)
  • Injuries to ligaments
  • Osteoarthritis (a common form of arthritis)
  • Sciatica (caused by pressure on the sciatic nerve)
  • Osteomyelitis (a bone infection)
  • Peripheral neuropathy (damage to nerves—often in the feet)
  • Arterial insufficiency (a slowing of blood in arteries)

If you have any of these conditions, it’s critical that you receive a proper diagnosis to ensure that you get the medical attention that you need.


When to Speak to a Doctor


An older woman in a chair rubbing her painful leg.


While varicose veins aren’t usually cause for concern, speak to a doctor if:

  • The veins are painful or make you feel uncomfortable
  • Leg and vein pain is interfering with your sleep
  • The skin near the veins is irritated or annoying

Learn more about when to see a doctor for leg pain.


Get an Accurate Diagnosis with a Reflux Ultrasound Examination

To properly diagnose your varicose vein condition, and even determine if you have varicose veins, it’s best to consult a vein specialist.

First, there will be a physical examination of your legs, looking for swelling or other developments. The doctor will ask questions about your leg pain experience.


A close-up of legs with varicose veins that require treatment.


Afterwards you should have a reflux venous ultrasound examination. It is important that a qualified physician and ultrasound technologist perform this exam.

With this imaging technology, the doctor can definitively determine if the veins in the legs are functioning properly. It will also identify where some veins may be having problems or need treatment.

This test is completely non-invasive and painless.

See what our vein specialist, Dr. Stuart Miller, has to say about the importance of an accurate reflux ultrasound examination.



At NJVVC, our vein doctor, Dr. Stuart Miller, specializes in properly performing and analyzing the results of a reflux ultrasound examination. It is imperative to administer and analyze this test properly to ensure accurate diagnosis and subsequent treatment. False negatives or false positives in this exam will lead to a vein condition being over-treated or under-treated—and can even lead to a wrong diagnosis altogether.


Common Symptoms of Varicose Veins

Leg Aches

Legs ache at the end of the day or after long periods of standing and/or sitting.


Physical Appearance of Veins

You see twisted rope-like bulges under the skin. They can look blueish or red. Sometimes you can’t see veins that are far below the skin’s surface.


Leg and/or Foot Swelling or Heaviness

Legs feel unusually heavy and make running or even walking uncomfortable or painful.

You often see swelling of feet and ankles.


Burning, Throbbing, Aching


You feel an itching sensation around the veins, or on your legs before veins are even visible.


Restless Legs or Leg Cramps at Night

Red Spots on Lower Legs/Shiny Legs

Red spots can be a sign of a burst vein.


Hyperpigmentation Around Ankles

Commonly seen with long-existing varicose veins.


Avoid These Complications of Varicose Veins with Proper Diagnosis

Blood Clots

Blood clots in veins can lead to serious swelling of the vein (thrombophlebitis) or deep vein thrombosis (DVT). DVT can lead to a life-threatening pulmonary embolism.



A varicose vein near the surface of the skin may bleed if you bump your leg. This bleeding can be difficult to stop. Elevate your leg and apply pressure; get immediate medical care if you cannot stop the bleeding.



A leg ulcer or wound will need to be cleaned regularly and bandaged properly.


Contact us at the New Jersey Vein and Vascular Center (NJVVC) for non-invasive vascular imaging studies, second opinions of imaging studies, and minimally invasive endovascular services.

Spider Veins vs. Reticular Veins … what’s the Difference?

Spider Veins vs. Reticular Veins … what’s the Difference?

Most people know the difference between spider veins and varicose veins. But what about spider veins vs. reticular veins? What’s the difference?

Veins are the structures that bring blood up from your legs and back to your heart. Three major vein issues that people commonly notice on their body are:

  • Spider veins
  • Reticular veins
  • Varicose veins


How Can I Tell the Difference Between Veins?

Spider Veins


Doctor using a magnifying glass to look at spider veins on a person’s legs


Spider veins, also called telangiectasias, are the smallest veins measuring 1mm or less. They appear close to the surface of the skin and often take on a “tree-like” appearance with the veins looking like tree branches.

Spider veins mainly occur on the thighs, ankles, or calves

These veins can vary in color, ranging from blue/purple, to red or pink.

Usually, these veins don’t cause any physical symptoms unless they occur in larger clusters. Some people may feel slight discomfort in a heavily veined area.


Reticular veins


Reticular veins on the back of a leg


Reticular veins measure between 1mm and 3mm in diameter and are located just below the skin’s surface. They are slightly larger than spider veins.

Reticular veins exist a little deeper in the skin than spider veins, which run more along the surface. Unlike varicose veins, they don’t protrude from beneath the skin.

Reticular veins are found in the legs—commonly on the back or inner thigh—but can occur on the face, breasts, ankles, or knees.

These veins are usually not a medical problem. More often, people are concerned with the aesthetic issues they cause.

Since reticular veins feed into spider veins, they are also called feeder veins. You often see reticular veins right near spider vein clusters.

These veins are blue/green or purple. However, they can take on a ropey appearance and exist in clusters, giving the skin an unattractive marbled appearance.

Reticular veins, unlike spider veins, are often annoying or painful. The more reticular veins you have in an area, the more annoying they will become.

Common symptoms of reticular veins include:

  • Itching or irritation
  • Tenderness or pain
  • General discomfort in the area
  • Burning
  • Fatigue and heaviness

Spider veins and reticular veins are both referred to as superficial veins.


Let’s Not Forget About Varicose Veins


Stages of the development of varicose veins


Varicose veins are the largest veins. They measure larger than 3mm in diameter. They often bulge out from the skin and usually are purple or blue. Varicose veins are most often found on thighs, calves, ankles, and feet.

Symptoms of varicose veins are similar to the symptoms of reticular veins.


What Causes Reticular Veins and Are They Dangerous?


A pregnant woman pointing to a vein problem in her leg


Reticular veins:

  • Run in families
  • More commonly occur in women than men
  • Can be caused by obesity
  • Can develop during pregnancy
  • Develop with age, especially in people over 50 years old
  • Can be caused by sitting or standing for long periods of time
  • Can have no known cause

However, reticular veins often aren’t reason for concern except for cosmetic reasons. But it’s important to know that reticular veins do indicate that blood is not flowing as well as it could.


Reticular Veins and Venous Insufficiency

Venous insufficiency or prior blood clots cause reticular veins.

Venous insufficiency occurs when blood doesn’t properly flow back to the heart from the feet. Blood pools in the veins.

This, in turn, creates pressure around the veins as well a swelling within the veins. Over time, the walls of the vein become weak and bulge. Veins can twist and skin marbling occurs.

Signs of venous insufficiency are:

  • Visible varicose veins on the skin’s surface
  • Leg pain or cramps
  • Weak legs
  • Tightness in calves
  • Itchy legs
  • Swelling in legs or ankles
  • Leg ulcers
  • Aching or heaviness in legs
  • Skin that thickens or changes color on legs or around ankles


When To See a Doctor for Reticular Veins

There are times when you should see a doctor about vein issues.

Contact a doctor if you are experiencing:

  • Pain or discomfort in or around veins
  • Bleeding veins
  • Ulcers around veins

It’s also a good idea to visit a vein doctor so they can:

  • Diagnose your vein problem with a vascular screening
  • Treat any damaged veins
  • Provide treatment for veins you find cosmetically unattractive

Here you can find out if your vein treatment will be Medicare accepted?


Self-care Treatment for Good Circulation

There are steps you can take to improve blood flow in reticular and other veins.


A car passenger’s wearing compression socks with legs elevated on the dashboard


These at-home solutions for improving blood flow include:

  • Wearing compression socks or stockings
  • Elevating your legs periodically
  • Leaving legs uncrossed when sitting
  • Exercising
  • Avoid sitting for long periods of time
  • Maintaining a healthy weight

These steps may be enough to relieve your discomfort from reticular or varicose veins.


Treatment Options for Reticular Veins

If you continue to have discomfort from reticular or varicose veins, or desire cosmetic treatment for any vein issue, it’s time to see a vein doctor.

Your treatment options will depend on the size and location of your veins and the severity of the venous insufficiency.

Medical treatment of existing reticular veins often prevents the development of associated spider veins. Treatment of reticular veins can also cause nearby spider veins to disappear.


Ultrasound-Guided Sclerotherapy

The National Institute of Health states that “Sclerotherapy, when used with the correct technique, is the most effective method for the management of reticular varices and telangiectases.”

Ultrasound-guided sclerotherapy involves the injection of a sclerosing agent into the vein. The inner walls of the vein collapse and the vein seals itself shut. Blood is naturally directed to other healthier veins. Over the course of a few months, the body reabsorbs the old vein, and it disappears.


FDA-Approved Varithena™


An ink stamp that reads FDA Approved


At NJVVC, we use Varithena for this sclerotherapy treatment. It is an FDA-approved patented microfoam that is extremely well tolerated by patients having sclerotherapy treatment.

No anesthesia is required for this procedure.

Contact NJVVC for a free vascular screening.

Can Spider Veins Come Back After Treatment?

Can Spider Veins Come Back After Treatment?

You’ve seen them before. And now you’re seeing them again! Those pesky, unattractive spider veins.

Perhaps you originally had them around your ankles or on your thighs and you sought treatment.

Now they seem to have reappeared, and you’re asking, can spider veins come back after treatment?


About Spider Veins

Spider veins are those thin red or blue veins on your skin’s surface.

You will commonly find spider veins on thighs and calves. They also appear on the face and breasts.

Spider veins can be itchy and annoying, or cause legs to feel slightly tired. But they are rarely painful and are almost always harmless.

Today, doctors consider sclerotherapy the best treatment for the removal of spider veins. But this isn’t always the medical procedure performed.

A close-up of spider veins on the skin


Reasons Spider Veins Return

There are several reasons spider veins return, or at least seem to return.

But what happens most often is that new spider veins develop in the same area after treatment.

So, it’s not that the spider veins that were treated are returning. Rather, new spider veins show up and are mistaken for the original veins.

Reasons spider veins return in the same area include:

  • A person has venous insufficiency, so deeper, untreated veins are causing the development of new spider veins
  • A person’s body doesn’t properly regulate new vein formation
  • The person continues with activities that cause spider veins, such as long periods of sitting or standing, or staying obese
  • Saline or skin laser was improperly used to treat them
  • Genetics

Graphic showing legs in various stages of venous disease 

Venous Insufficiency

Venous insufficiency is a progressive vein disease. A vein specialist can treat it, but venous insufficiency will not go away on its own.

If a person has venous insufficiency, the underlying varicose veins combined with an increase in venous pressure encourage the development of new spider veins.

So new spider veins form.

It seems like the old ones are returning, but they’re not.

Doctors can diagnose venous insufficiency with a simple, painless ultrasound of your legs. This will show whether your vein valves are working correctly, and whether you have this condition.

Spider vein treatment should be delayed until this test is performed. If the cause of the spider veins is indeed venous insufficiency, the underlying veins need to be treated first.

If the underlying problem remains untreated, the spider veins are sure to return.

And venous insufficiency needs to be treated for health reasons.

Endovenous laser ablation (EVLT) or Varithena, a micro-foam sclerosant, are favored ways to treat venous insufficiency.

The spider vein won’t be under pressure once the varicose vein receives treatment. At that time, sclerotherapy can treat the spider veins successfully.

If spider veins recur after sclerotherapy, they usually come back in a much less severe form. This happens quite some time after the sclerotherapy procedure.


Genetics and Hormones

If your genetic makeup is encouraging the development of spider veins, trying to get rid of them is an uphill battle.

How do you know your spider veins are caused by genetics?

The easiest way to find out is to ask immediate family members if they’re developing spider veins, too. If they are, you have your answer!

If they aren’t, your spider veins may still be genetic. But the good news is that spider veins caused by genetics are no reason for any health concerns.

Hormonal changes such as pregnancy or menopause can also encourage the development of spider veins.


 Laser Therapy

Some doctors use laser therapy as a treatment for spider veins.

Many patients find this procedure to be painful since heat is applied directly to the skin. It also takes a longer time to treat a small area.

Lasers can also cause hypopigmentation­—­a loss of melanin in the skin.

But most discouraging is that if the laser doesn’t produce enough heat to seal the vein, the procedure will fail. For this reason, you will need additional treatments.



Sclerotherapy is the state-of-the-art treatment for spider veins.

It is considerably more effective and faster than laser treatment. And you don’t feel pain.

During sclerotherapy, the doctor injects a solution or sclerosing agent into the vein.

This causes the vein to scar and collapse. Eventually, you can no longer see the vein since it is resorbed by the body.

Sodium chloride is no longer considered an acceptable sclerosing agent. It can be  painful for the patient and can cause serious complications.

Eighty percent of spider veins treated by visual sclerotherapy usually disappear in three to six weeks. So even one treatment of sclerotherapy will create noticeable results.

Patients may need new treatments every few years if new spider veins appear.

A smiling middle-aged woman walking in the park


How Can You Keep Spider Veins from Recurring?

Are there things you can do after treatment to keep more spider veins from developing?

The answer is yes.

They include:

  • Exercising your legs regularly
  • Staying at or getting to a healthy weight
  • Eating a balanced diet
  • Wearing compression stockings or socks

If you want to learn more about spider veins, read:

If you are seeking effective, safe, and comfortable treatment for your spider veins, contact us at NJVVC.

A Comprehensive Guide to Leg Ulcers

A Comprehensive Guide to Leg Ulcers

This blog covers the first signs of leg ulcers and both medical and at-home treatments. We’ll discuss why it’s important to examine the underlying causes and how to reduce and prevent their frequency.

An ulcer is an open sore on your skin. Ulcers can affect any area of your skin, but often, they occur on the legs.

Leg ulcers can be very painful and often take as long as three to four months to heal, with appropriate treatment.

The most common cause of leg ulcers is poor blood circulation in your veins. This can lead to several other issues including chronic vein insufficiency. Early detection is key in preventing irreparable damage.

Anatomy of Leg Ulcers

A leg ulcer is a chronic sore that develops between your knee and your ankle. They typically appear on your inner leg near your ankle and may take several weeks if not months to heal.

They present as large, red, swollen, fluid-seeping sores with irregular edges that are resistant to healing.



Generally, ulcers are characterized by how they look, their location, the surrounding skin.

Some causes of leg ulcers include:

• Lymphedema
• Venous Disease
• Peripheral Arterial Disease
• History of Leg Ulcers
• Deep Vein Thrombosis (DVT)
• Undergoing Surgery or Injuring an Infected Leg


Signs and Symptoms

Most symptoms of vein disorders are transitory and can be effectively treated. However, venous leg ulcers are much more challenging and severe.

The heightened risk of an open sore getting infected is what distinguishes it from other diseases. If left untreated, a venous leg ulcer can have a negative impact on your health.

Signs of leg ulcers may include aching and tightness in your calves. Throbbing or a heavy feeling in your legs may also signify their coming appearance.

Once an ulcer develops, you may see discolored splotches around the edges due to pooled and trapped blood.

Some leg ulcers will only affect the skin, however, there are times when the sore may descend deeper into your muscle, your tendon, fat layer, or bone.

Risk Factors

Women are at a higher risk of having Venous leg ulcers. Women affected tend to be in their forties, while the men affected tend to be in their seventies. Other possible causes for venous leg ulcers include:

• Cancer
• Obesity
• Smoking
• Immobility
• Pregnancy
• Varicose Veins
• Heredity/Genetics
• Incompetent Valves
• Swelling of a Superficial Vein (phlebitis)
• Muscle Weakness in the Legs, Leg Injury, or Trauma

A majority of ulcers heal within three months. However, some ulcers may take years to heal and about 15% may never completely heal.


Seeking Medical Help

You should contact your doctor if you have a wound that will not heal, or if you think that your wound is infected. Your doctor should inquire about any history of recurring or chronic conditions, like diabetes or hardening of the arteries.

In some cases, additional tests such as an X-ray or CT scan may be needed.

Signs of a wound or leg ulcer infection can include:

• Chills
• Odor
• Fever
• Bleeding
• Increased Pain
• Excess Drainage
• Swelling About the Wound
• Redness, Increased Warmth
• Cloudy or Yellowish Drainage


Diagnosing Leg Ulcers

A physician will perform a Doppler Study to evaluate your veins and arteries. During a Doppler Study, an ultrasound probe is placed on the skin in order to visualize blood flow patterns.

Your doctor may also obtain blood pressure readings at your arms and ankles for comparison if he/she suspects arterial disease.

Treating Leg Ulcers

Some treatment options are non-invasive, while other methods are medically involved. Treatment options are administered based on the severity of your condition.

Medical treatment strives to enhance blood flow to the affected area as well as encourage recovery of the ulcer.


Practicing Prevention

Here are some things that you can do at home to prevent a leg ulcer.

Compression Stockings

Compression stockings assist in reducing strain and edema on the skin due to increased pressure and swelling.

Elevate Your Legs

Elevating your legs will help in circulating blood back to your heart. Also, use a pillow to prop up your feet when sleeping, and elevate your legs above your heart for 30 minutes when you awaken, and repeat up to four times daily.

Maintain Healthy Skin

Keep your lower legs clean and moisturized with a non-drying, alcohol-free moisturizing cream or lotion.



Exercise is known to promote healthy veins and blood flow. Daily exercise is also an awesome way to increase circulation. Foot and ankle exercises can promote good blood flow. So, give it a try.

Point your toes upwards, then point them away from you. Repeat this exercise for a few sets every day. This can be done in a sitting or standing position.

New Jersey Vein and Vascular Center in Morris County is committed to personalized patient care and good vein health.

Our state-of-the-art vein center maintains the highest standards and advances in the field of vein and vascular care. Our goal is to diagnose and treat the underlying causes of your various vein conditions.

For more on our office and services, please contact us today.

Everything About CVI Explained

Everything About CVI Explained

This blog covers the basics of venous insufficiency a precursor for chronic vein insufficiency( CVI). It also goes into detail about the symptoms, causes and common treatments of CVI.

Over 40% of people in the United States have chronic venous insufficiency. Early detection is key to preventing damage caused by vein disease.

That’s why we’ve put together a guide on everything there is to know about CVI and how a vein specialist can help remediate symptoms.

What is CVI?

Chronic venous insufficiency or CVI is an acute or persisting form of venous insufficiency. Venous insufficiency is a vein disease that occurs when valves in the leg are not working properly.

When these valves are not functioning, it becomes difficult to return blood to the heart. Blood will then begin to collect and pool. The “pooling” of blood in our veins is called stasis.

What Causes CVI?

First, let’s go back to basic biology with the anatomy of a vein and our circulatory system. Our heart pumps blood through the arteries to our entire body to keep it functioning.

Our veins are responsible for returning blood to the heart. In order to reach the heart, our blood needs to flow upward from our legs.

To do this, our leg muscles contract while walking. This causes our veins to push blood against gravity and towards our heart.

However, something else needs to be in place to keep our blood flowing up, not down. That’s where valves gain their importance.

Each vein in our legs contains one-way valves. These valves are responsible for keeping blood flowing in an upward direction.

When they are not properly functioning, valves no longer have the ability to direct blood. This allows blood to pool and collect which causes CVI.

Valve damage is a common cause of CVI and can occur due to several reasons. It can result from simply aging or from extended sitting and reduced mobility.

Although, the most common cause of CVI is Deep Vein thrombosis (DVT).

deep-vein-thrombosis, blood pooling in leg veins to form a clot


DVT occurs when a blood clot forms in one of the veins deep inside your body.

CVI differs from DVT mainly due to its causes. CVI can often occur without a clear-cut reason whereas DVT happens because of immobility.

People often develop blood clots after surgery or traveling for that reason.

Learn more about understanding and preventing DVT.

Symptoms of CVI

Over time, CVI can cause many symptoms and affect our bodies in more ways than one.

CVI can cause severe pain and swelling in your legs, feet, or ankles. It can also cause changes to the skin on your legs that lead to ulcers or open sores.

Venous ulcers are painful and notoriously known to be very difficult to heal. Venous ulcers also have a high tendency to become infected, causing even more trouble for your body.

If you have any symptoms of CVI, it’s better to see a doctor sooner rather than later. Non-invasive treatments become limited if the disease is left untreated.

Here are more common symptoms of CVI:
• Swelling in lower legs or ankles
• Aching in legs
• New varicose veins
• Flaking or itching skin near legs and feet
• Stasis ulcers

Venous-Insufficiency, doctor shows venous insufficiency on legs

Stages of CVI

The severity of CVI depends on how long it’s left untreated. Symptoms of CVI increase as the disease progresses and so do the hidden health risks. Therefore, getting an early diagnosis of CVI can be the difference between having subtle or severe symptoms.

Once showing the common symptoms of venous insufficiency, patients should seek medical advice from their doctor.

For a formal diagnosis, your doctor may use a venous ultrasound to examine the blood circulation in your legs.

When left untreated, CVI can often reach a dangerous stage. Eventually, the pressure and swelling will get too much for our veins to handle.

This can lead to blood vessels in our legs bursting. The overlying skin in this area is then very sensitive and susceptible to cracking.


After diagnosis, your doctor may treat CVI and its symptoms using several different methods.

These can include compression stockings or antibiotics, depending on the severity of the case.

The overall goal should be to improve your circulation and decrease venous insufficiency.

compression-therapy, comparison of varicose veins with and without compression socks

Compression Stockings

Compression stockings are the most common treatment for mild cases of venous insufficiency.

Compression stockings are lightly-fitted support stockings or socks.

Compression therapy aids the body in moving blood up the leg against the pull of gravity. They are used to improve circulation and reduce swelling in the legs.

Compression therapy is also used to aid in healing after various types of vein surgery.


A doctor may prescribe antibiotics to resolve any skin issues related to CVI. Issues can include deep skin infections caused by ulcers or sores.

Antibiotics will not treat the underlying issues of CVI, but they can still help clear up skin problems that manifest.


Sclerotherapy is the most common spider vein and smaller varicose vein treatment. It involves injecting a solution directly into veins. The solution then causes the veins to collapse and disappear.

Sclerotherapy is one of the easier solutions to vein issues. Treatment time depends on the specific case but can take anywhere from 15 minutes to an hour. Sclerotherapy is minimally invasive and requires only topical anesthesia.

Sclerotherapy is typically used to treat spider veins or varicose veins. However, it can also treat symptoms of CVI. Treated veins usually disappear in three to six weeks. Some larger veins take longer.

Up to 80% of the spider veins treated will disappear with each treatment.

endovenous-ablation, varicose veins and treatment with ablation

Endovenous Thermal Ablation

Endovenous Laser Treatment (EVLT) is a superior treatment for vein problems. It is also known as laser vein ablation or obliteration.

Unlike conventional surgery, EVLT provides much less risk and is extremely precise.

A catheter with a laser tip is inserted into the vein. Ultrasound imaging helps guide exactly where to position the laser. The laser tip catheter is then activated inside the affected vein to shrink it down and seal it.

This stops the blood flow to that vein and diverts it into others. It increases circulation and relieves existing symptoms of CVI.

This outpatient treatment takes less than an hour and is minimally invasive. Relief of symptoms begins within several days of the procedure.

Ambulatory Phlebectomy

Ambulatory phlebectomy is a minimally invasive outpatient procedure. It involves removing incompetent, superficial, or varicose veins.

This treatment is usually done on larger veins that bulge above the surface of the skin.

CVI can often be debilitating to deal with. But a CVI diagnosis does not mean you’re left without options. There are many treatments available to ease symptoms and vein issues. Finding the right vein specialist is the first step to recovery.

At the New Jersey Vein and Vascular Center, we’re committed to personalized vein care. Our goal is to diagnose and treat the underlying causes of various vein conditions.

For more on our vein services and treatments, please contact us today.

What You Need to Know About Venous Ulcers

What You Need to Know About Venous Ulcers

A product of venous insufficiency, venous ulcers are a painful and stressful health issue. Managing this condition means making lifestyle changes. But, how do you know if you have a venous ulcer to begin with? And, are there ways to prevent them?  

Here we discuss everything you need to know about venous ulcers: what they are, the risks associated with them, and how to prevent and treat them.

What is a Venous Ulcer?

Venous ulcers or leg ulcers are open sores on your legs caused by poor blood circulation in the veins of the leg. They heal very slowly and can lead to further complications if not adequately treated.  

What Causes Venous Ulcers? 

Venous ulcers occur as a result of your leg veins not being able to keep blood flowing back to the heart. This leads to blood pooling in the lower legs, especially the bony areas, usually the ankles. Since blood is not flowing properly, the legs swell, exacting pressure on the skin. This results in an open sore otherwise known as an ulcer. 

What does a leg ulcer look like?

Leg ulcers begin to form when blood pooling in the lower legs goes untreated. The very next sign is stasis dermatitis. Stasis dermatitis is itchy, thin and hardened skin that may have undergone a color change to red, blue, or purple.

You will also notice heaviness, pain, or cramping in your legs. Signs that this condition has advanced into a leg ulcer are:

  • A sore with a red base. It may usually be covered by yellow tissue
  • Uneven sore borders
  • Shiny, tight, warm, and discolored skin surrounding the sore
  • Leg pain

For people who think they’re at risk for venous ulcers, you should develop a prevention plan. Ulcers are a very stubborn condition to treat once fully formed. Typically, it takes 3-4 months for your legs to fully heal from a venous ulcer.

Venous Ulcer Prevention 

To prevent venous ulcers, you will need to embrace lifestyle changes that promote a healthy flow of blood for the veins in your legs. Preventative methods include:

  • Avoiding smoking
  • Getting regular exercise
  • Staying at a healthy weight – if you are overweight you may want to develop an exercise program 
  • Not staying in the same position for hours – take breaks to move around
  • Moderate your salt intake
  • If you have high blood pressure or diabetes, keep it in check
  • Wear compression stockings, which can help increase pressure in your leg veins, keep swelling at a minimum, and prevent venous ulcers

Risks Associated with Ulcers

If not properly treated, venous ulcers can lead to severe complications such as:

Skin Infections

The sore may become infected if treatment is ignored. The symptoms of infection include odor, pus, serious pain, and fever. 

Bone Infections

When a wound is open too long, bone infections may occur from invading bacteria. Signs of bone infection include fever, muscle spasms, and deep pain in your legs. 

Skin Cancer

If your ulcer becomes infected and you continue to ignore it, a malignant tumor may form. Sometimes even with treatment, this may still occur. It is always important to seek medical attention at the first signs of an ulcer.


Venous ulcers are not a condition that will go away over time. Without help from a professional, they can escalate to severely painful or even life-threatening conditions.

That’s why this specific type of ulcer requires a lot of care from the patient and treatment from a professional. Treatment of venous ulcers includes:

  • Compression stockings, to increase blood circulation in your veins, improving your body’s capacity to heal the ulcer.
  • Elevating your legs for 30 minutes 3 to 4 times a day to improve circulation
  • Antibiotics to clear the infection
  • Surgery to improve circulation. This will help the sore to heal and prevent future blood pooling, as well as the development of future ulcers.

Are you experiencing pain in your legs? Have you noticed any symptoms of venous ulcers? The New Jersey Vein and Vascular Center offers top of the line, personalized vein diagnosis and treatment. We will do our best in expediting your length of treatment to limit your pain and downtime. Contact us today for the highest standard of care. 

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