Friday, May 18, 2012

Spider Veins Pt. 2

Yesterday I had an appointment with the vein specialist to go over the results of the ultrasounds from what feels like forever ago. Before the doctor even began talking, I started breaking out into hives from the hot temperature and small space of the room. That was pretty embarrassing and unrelated, but I figured I'd add that detail in.

I have ADHD, so it's difficult for me to sustain attention when people are talking to me, particularly in the afternoon after my medication has started to wear out. What I heard him say, without using too many medical terms, is that my primary vein system seems to be working all right, but my secondary vein system and the greater saphenous veins in both legs have some issues. (Really? I would have never guessed there was a problem.) This link has a little information about venous reflux disease. The idea that this is going on inside my body is very disturbing to me, because really anything dealing with veins grosses me out.

Before the doctor discussed treatment options he said that in order for insurance to consider paying for anything there was a 3 month waiting period from when I was first seen in order to document that compression stockings weren't working & that further treatment was necessary. After he said that, I felt tears welling up in my eyes & I was overcome with extreme disappointment. If you recall from my earlier post, when I had sclerotherapy several years ago there was virtually no waiting time & within a few months I was done. Here it is May & I would like to be able to wear shorts or skirts this summer. Having to wait until at least July means a whole summer wasted & treatment is going to cut into the next school year, meaning I may have to miss work. That is really not the preferred option, especially when I don't have to work for the next few months & could use that time to drive the hour to the doctor's office for treatment.

When I do finally start treatment, the doctor wants to use Endovenous Laser Ablation to treat the larger veins & probably some sort of sclerotherapy to treat the smaller or surface veins. Most of what he said is foggy due to my disappointment & trying to not break down into tears. The course of treatment isn't a one-day thing, it could take a few months to complete, which takes us well into fall or winter. At that point I'll be wearing long pants or jeans.


  1. That sucks. I used to assist the doc I worked with before with the sclero. Is there not a cosmetic clinic you can just walk into down there and make an appt for sclero? Maybe it's different in Canada, but with us, people just called up, came in for consult, and had a treatment appointment within days. We also did spider veins on a nd:yag laser, but honestly, I wasn't impressed with the results. I'm not familiar with the ELA treatment.

    If it were me, I'd say screw the veins and wear shorts any way this summer. If anyone has anything snide to say...well...screw em.

  2. Not surprisingly, there aren't any doctors in my city who treat spider veins with sclerotherapy, so I'm going across state lines for treatment. I didn't think it'd take such a long time, but apparently this clinic wants insurance to pay (which is great) but also throws a wrench into my plans. He's looking at it from a medical point of view rather than a cosmetic one. In the long run I guess that's better but you know...instant gratification...haha.