You’ve long been bothered by the spider veins or varicose veins on your legs. You want to get treatment for them, but you don’t want to see any old doctor. You want to see a vein specialist or vein doctor. When you see a specialist, you are working with a doctor who has dedicated his or her career to treating problem veins and other vascular issues. As you start your search for a doctor, here are a few things to keep an eye out for.
All doctors go to medical school. But not all doctors become board certified. If a vein doctor is board certified, that’s a signal to you that he or she has completed additional years of training, passed an exam and continued to receive continuing education. Vein specialists usually have board certification in Interventional Radiology or Diagnostic Radiology. In some cases, a specialist has certification in both areas.
Board certification is only worth so much if the treatments the doctor is offering aren’t the best. The treatments available for spider and varicose veins have come a long way in recent years. In the past, invasive procedures such as vein stripping, which required up to four weeks of recovery time, were among your only treatment options. If a vein doctor only offers invasive options, it’s best to look for a specialist who will perform more up-to-date, advanced and considerably less invasive treatments, such as endovenous laser ablation, ambulatory phlebectomy or ultrasound guided procedures. Ask the specialist what the recovery and downtime period is like for each treatment and how effective the treatments are for removing problem veins.
The best vein specialists will have plenty of patients lined up behind them to provide glowing recommendations and referrals. Along with speaking to previous patients or asking your friends who have had vein treatments for their recommendations, ask the doctor if you can see before and after photos of patients. Looking at those pictures will give you a good idea of how effective vein treatment is and whether it might be right for you.
In many cases, it’s a good idea to listen to your gut when deciding if you want to work with a particular vein doctor or not. Not every doctor is a good match for every patient. If you feel comfortable with the specialist, get a sense that he’s really listening to your concerns, and feel that your questions have all been answers, you’ve found the right doctor for you. If not, it can be worth your time to keep on looking. A team of leading vein specialists practice at Vascular & Interventional Associates in Cincinnati. To learn more about our doctors, call 859-286-7333 to schedule an appointment today.