Is vein evaluation and treatment covered by insurance?

The evaluation/treatment for varicose veins, because they can cause pain and disability, is covered by insurance. The treatment for spider veins, because it is a cosmetic issue, is not covered.

Do you participate in insurance plans?

The AVA participates and is a member of most major insurance plans.

What can I expect afterwards as far as downtime following an ablation?

Most people are up and around immediately after the procedure. Most serious exercise is postponed until 24 to 48 hours after the procedure due to mild discomfort and the need to wear the compression stocking, although there is no medical contraindication to exercise. Swimming should be avoided for five days.

What can I expect afterwards as far as downtime following sclerotherapy?

There is no downtime after sclerotherapy. You do, however, need to wear a compression stocking overnight following each procedure.

How long does an ablation take? Sclerotherapy?

On average, a vein ablation takes between 40 minutes to 1 hour. Sclerotherapy takes 30 minutes at most.

What kind of anesthesia do you use?

Sclerotherapy does not require anesthesia. Ablations are all performed under local, without the need for a post-procedure recovery period. In other words, you are able to drive as soon as we complete the procedure. In cases where patients have severe anxiety, we may prescribe something to take before the procedure that can help.

Is it painful?

Almost universally, patients report that it “wasn’t bad at all!” following their ablation. We go to great lengths to make sure that you are comfortable and that there are no surprises as far as discomfort. For sclerotherapy, which involves multiple injections, the needle is tiny; occasional discomfort can occur but this is easily tolerated.

What is a stripping procedure and do you do that?

A stripping procedure is an old-fashioned procedure that involves removing the vein with reflux (as opposed to shutting it down and leaving it in place). Strippings are performed in a hospital with general anesthesia, require large incisions and a long recovery, and have a very high recurrence rate. Vein ablation has replaced stripping as a treatment for varicose veins, not only because it only involves a couple needle sticks as opposed to big incisions, but also because the results are better in the long run.

What if I've already had a stripping or an ablation?

If you have already been treated and you are concerned about a recurrence, allow us to evaluate the cause. Often, another vein in the leg can develop reflux and, in the case of stripping procedures, occasionally the vein can grow back and develop reflux in it. We have specialized treatments for this as well.