Deep, Aching, Painful Legs

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Deep, Aching, Painful Legs
Treatments

Millions of Americans wonder why their legs ache and feel heavy at the end of the day, or after a few hours of sitting or standing. It can be miserable. Others have a “restless” feeling in the lower legs, and become quite uncomfortable if they can’t move or stretch the legs. When this happens, many believe they must have the wrong shoes, or they blame hard floors. But the real cause can be abnormal, backwards flow (“reflux”) in the under-the-skin veins of the legs.
The typical patient may not have any visible vein abnormalities. But functional vein ultrasound—performed by a registered vascular technologist—can evaluate for reflux and backwards flow in diseased veins.

Backwards flow in the saphenous veins can act like a trap door, causing abnormally high vein pressures and poor vein circulation out of the leg. In the old days, treatment was painful and involved open incisions and stripping of the abnormal veins. Breakthrough technology came almost 20 years ago: first with laser ablation of the abnormal veins, later with radio frequency ablation, or RFA (which is less painful than laser).

This office-based procedure is patient-friendly, with simple local anesthesia, no IV’s, and no opiate pain medicine needed. Patients are encouraged to do lots of walking immediately after the procedure, and return to normal activities in 2-3 days.

People often ask, “Don’t I need that (abnormal) vein?” The answer is a resounding NO, because 95% of the blood flow out of the legs is carried by the normal, deep veins. When an abnormal saphenous vein flows backwards, it makes these deep veins work much harder. They can’t keep up, and so the leg becomes congested with blood in all the veins—causing the aching, pain, and swelling.

Once the abnormal vein is sealed closed with RFA, all of the normal veins can do their job, and vein circulation improves dramatically.

Set Your Legs Free