Frequently Asked Questions I was told that varicose veins are just a cosmetic issue, but my legs ache and feel heavy. Can varicose veins actually cause problems? Absolutely. In addition to causing pain, heaviness and fatigue, varicose veins left unattended can progress to chronic venous insufficiency or CVI. CVI can causing swelling, discoloration and even ulcers to develop. We recommend treatment at its earliest stages, before more serious complications develop. What health benefits could I see from treating my veins? What harm could occur without treatment? Eliminating diseased varicose veins allows for more efficient removal of waste products from the legs and promotes better return of blood to the heart. Legs feel lighter and more energetic after treatment, and the risks of phlebitis and ulcerations lessen. Rashes and discoloration of the leg often improve, and patients often find themselves able to be more active. Don’t we need our veins? How is it helpful to remove them? Because varicose veins are diseased leaking vessels, it’s best to eliminate them. The stagnant blood in varicose veins can clot and damage other healthy veins. Furthermore, as a leaking vessel, varicose veins allow dark blood — full of waste products — to congest in the leg. Sealing this leak improves the circulation by allowing the “bad” blood to more efficiently leave the leg. Are treatments covered by insurance? Do I need a referral to be seen? Varicose vein treatment is covered by most insurance plans. We are an in-network provider for Medicare and most major insurance plans. We have in-house insurance specialists who will obtain your authorization and file all your insurance paperwork for you. There is no need to get a referral to see us; if needed, our front office can obtain this for you. Do treatments hurt and are there side effects? Our skill and experience in performing vein procedures keep discomfort from treatments low. Your treatment is performed in our comfortable office setting. Patients can drive themselves to and from appointments and walk immediately after treatments. Temporary bruising is the most common side effect. Serious side effects are possible with any medical procedure, but compared to traditional surgery, serious side effects are rare with our advanced techniques. Will there be restrictions in my activity after the procedure? Will I miss time from work? No. Rather than restrict your activity, we encourage daily walks and exercise. Downtime can vary; however, most patients return to work the same day. I have restless legs syndrome. Can vein treatment help? There is exciting news for patients with varicose veins and restless legs. Studies have shown that 90 percent of patients treated with endovenous laser experience an 80 percent improvement in restless legs symptoms. These results were so significant, that the investigators recommended that all patients with restless legs syndrome be evaluated for vein problems before being placed on chronic medication therapy. Interestingly, as with restless legs, painful leg cramps often resolve quickly after treatment. I have spider veins, but my legs hurt! Could I have a deeper problem on the inside of my leg? Definitely. Spider veins by themselves usually cause a localized burning or tingling sensation. However, if your legs ache, are heavy, fatigued or swollen, you may have internal varicose veins as well. We have special devices to identify these difficult-to-see vessels. On occasion, patients have suffered with leg pain for years before being evaluated for vein disease. Remember, varicose veins don’t have to bulge to cause problems; they can be hiding deeper in the leg! Should I wait until I have all my children to treat my veins? This is an unfortunate misconception. During pregnancy, the mother’s blood volume increases and the weight of the fetus puts pressure on the veins. Varicose veins go haywire in this setting; new varicosities form faster and faster as the vein disease spreads unattended. Additionally, since blood clots and phlebitis are common complications of pregnancy, early treatment is important. Treating the veins beforehand can make your pregnancy more comfortable and prevent irreversible damage to your veins. Vein clinics seem to be popping up all over town. Yet, why do many travel a distance to be seen at Advanced Vein Center? Some doctors in the Valley may offer vein treatment as a sideline procedure to their patients. At Advanced Vein Center, vein care is the sole focus of our practice and has been for more than a decade. Dr. Osorio was one of the first in Arizona to achieve board certification as a vein specialist (through the American Board of Phlebology), and is one of only a few physicians to hold both the RPVI and RVT ultrasound credentials.Our state-of-the art facility is equipped with the latest laser and ultrasound technologies, and our staff has more than 20 years of combined clinical experience. From the smallest spider veins to advanced leg ulcers, we offer the most complete vein treatment anywhere. I don’t have insurance. Can I still afford treatment? Our treatments cost a fraction of that of traditional surgery, and unlike surgery, you won’t have to miss a day of work. We have special discounts and interest-free payment plans to make our modern treatments available to all those who may need them. My veins are huge and my skin is discoloring and has even broken open at times. I have been told I need surgery. Could your nonsurgical treatment help even a severe case like mine? Yes. Even the largest varicose veins can now be treated with today’s advanced techniques. In general, the more severe the condition, the better the result. I have been told that aching and heavy legs are just a part of getting older. Does it have to be like this? Not at all! Varicose veins don’t have to bulge at the surface to cause problems. Waste products could be accumulating inside the leg from hidden, internal varicose veins. This can make the legs ache and feel heavy; some people feel like they are dragging their legs. After treatment, it is rewarding to see seniors become more active and resume activities that they thought they were too “old” to do. Do the treated veins ever come back after treatment? No. The treated veins are gone permanently and will not return. However, because varicose vein disease is a chronic condition, no treatment — not even surgery — can stop new veins from forming in the future. Fortunately, because our treatment is so thorough, any new veins tend to be less severe and more easily dealt with. Occasional touch-up treatments can help to keep your legs problem-free for years to come. I tried laser treatment for spider veins, but the veins keep coming back. What’s the problem? Many laser clinics will perform only a superficial treatment of the visible surface veins. In contrast, we carefully evaluate for any deeper feeding veins prior to injecting spider veins. We feel this thorough approach provides the best results, by addressing the veins at the origin of the problem.