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FAQs

Expert clinical advice and guidance is an essential part of any vascular procedure. Here are answers to some of the most common questions.

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General FAQs

A vascular specialist is trained in treating varicose veins and artery diseases. It is imperative that your veins and arteries carry blood freely within your body. Blockages sometimes occur for a number of reasons and it’s important these are monitored or treated. Maintaining a healthy weight, doing regular exercise, not smoking and eating a healthy diet may be factors you can control.

No. While many people are referred to us by their doctors, we don’t need a referral. However, the vascular specialist will keep your doctor up to date with your treatment and progress.

Please call us on 008 45 45 88, email us at info@revascular.co.nz or complete our enquiry form. To speed things up complete our online consultation form.

We can usually get you in within the month. If your vascular problem is serious, we have urgent appointments available, especially for arterial conditions.

Common symptoms include aching legs at the end of the day, sore veins that may look ropey (not all varicose veins are easily visible) itching or burning. Varicose veins often run in families. Send us a photo of your varicose veins and we’ll let you know what our vascular specialist thinks. 

After an ultrasound scan of your legs by one of our sonographers, our specialist can determine you have varicose veins. There are usually two parts to the treatment. First a sealant is used to seal off the feeding veins, which are deep and do not show on the skin. A thin tube is inserted in the vein, then tiny pinhead amounts of sealant are dispensed at intervals along the vein while being monitored by ultrasound. Secondly, the visible veins off this vein are sealed. This is called sclerotherapy. Sometimes, the only treatment needed is sclerotherapy. 

For varicose vein treatment, the time it takes depends on whether you need both legs treated and the condition of your veins. It can be as little as 15 minutes. We say allow a good hour to cover a chat with the vascular specialist and your consent for varicose veins treatment, the actual procedure and then a short recovery period.

Our treatment for varicose veins is quick, with low-level discomfort. You will be given a small, local injection, which feels like a scratch. This is so a tube can be inserted into the vein. During the procedure most patients feel pressure when the vascular specialist seals off the vein. Some may feel a little discomfort when the tube is taken out but there is not so much as a plaster needed after. Next, there are small injections to seal off smaller veins. The procedure is quick and discomfort is minimised. Any mild aches afterward can be treated with Paracetamol or anti-inflammatories.

We recommend taking it easy for several days afterwards. You can go back to normal daily activity pretty much straight away, including work as long as you can move around during the day.  But nothing too strenuous and no heavy lifting. One of our nurses will call you soon after your procedure so you can be guided by their advice.

This depends on what treatment you need, most insurers cover varicose vein treatment for medical reasons. After your consultation we’ll give you a quote.

Most insurers cover varicose vein treatment for medical reasons. It’s best to check with your insurer.

Varicose veins are ropey looking and will normally bulge out from under the skin. Spider veins, on the other hand, are much smaller and there might be patches of them or clusters. Sometimes spider veins look like star bursts. Spider veins, unlike varicose veins, won’t usually cause pain or aching. If they’re unsightly or troubling they can be successfully treated with skin laser. Go to: laseraesthetics.co.nz  skin laser clinic in Wellington.

Right here! We sell medical-grade compression stockings/compression socks in our online shop. The pressure at the ankle is greater than at the knee to encourage blood or fluid to flow from your legs to your heart. We often recommend class 1 grade for most because they’re strong, yet easy to put on.

We call this a varicose vein myth. Yes, you can continue putting up with varicose veins but often they can start to impede your life, ache and may lead to skin deterioration and venous leg ulcers. Like most things, we recommend the sooner you get varicose vein treatment the better the outcome.

Like many other medical treatments, there are risks associated with varicose vein treatment. Some of the more common include infection and skin discolouration over the treated varicose veins. Other less common complications include DVT (deep vein thrombosis), allergic and hypersensitivity reactions. Our medical specialists will discuss these risks with you and when they take you through the consent form.

Venaseal uses a sealant that mixes with the water component of your blood to stick the walls of the treated vein together. It is in effect a type of ‘glue’. To achieve this, a small ‘dot’ of sealant is placed at about 3cm intervals along the vein via a very fine tube, while being monitored with ultrasound. Over time, the treated vein is slowly reabsorbed.

There is a very small chance (less than 1%) that your body can react to the sealant and develop a type of allergic reaction called a hypersensitivity reaction. When this occurs, there may be redness and tenderness over the treated veins for longer than usual. Treatment is with Panadol or Ibuprofen as needed until it settles, usually over several weeks.

Other allergic or sensitivity reaction may occur to the surgical drapes we use, the local anaesthetic, the skin cleaner and the silicone rubber band at the top of the thigh-length stockings. Our medical specialists will discuss these risks with you when they take you through the consent form.

Once varicose veins have been treated,  they typically take about 3-6 months to settle. In general, the bigger the veins at the start, the longer the healing process.

After treatment, your varicose veins will be tender and lumpy. The tenderness lasts for about 3-6 weeks and the lumpiness takes about 3-6 months to resolve.

This will depend on the number and size of your varicose veins at the start. In some patients who have a lot of varicose veins, we cannot treat all of them in the initial treatment because there is a limit to the amount of ‘vein irritant’  we can use for the vein injection part of the treatment (sclerotherapy). If you need further treatment, a small charge will apply to this. Approximately 20% of our patients require further treatments. Our nurses and medical specialist will give you an indication whether this applies to you.

If the Venaseal treatment of the leaking main surface veins is not successful, and as long as you have followed our instructions about what to do after you procedure, Richard Evans Vascular will re-treat the relevant  main surface veins at no additional cost.

Note – this is different to additional varicose vein injections (sclerotherapy) for varicose veins that remain after your first treatment. As there is a limit to the volume of ‘vein irritant’ that can safely be used while performing sclerotherapy, there are some patients who require additional injection treatments, usually about 3-6 months later. If you require these additional varicose vein injections, there is a small additional cost. Our specialist nurse will explain this to you during your phone consultations, and you will be reminded on the day of your treatment while your specialist is doing your treatment consent and again by our specialist nurses before going home.

Our medical specialists will answer any questions and take you through the consent before your procedure. After treatment it’s normal for hard lumps to appear along the treated veins, these take 3-6 months to resolve. Our medical specialists will advise if any additional treatments, like sclerotherapy are needed. In rare cases if the Venaseal treatment of the leaking main surface veins is not successful, and as long as you have followed our instructions about what to do after your procedure, Simply Veins will re-treat the relevant main surface vein at no additional cost. There is a small risk of hypersensitivity reaction to the sealant, sclerosants, local anaesthetic, skin cleaners, surgical drapes or silicone stocking bands.

It’s important to walk every hour for a few minutes to help reduce the small risk of DVT (deep vein thrombosis) and to follow the instructions of our surgeon.

Vascular Ultrasound Scan FAQs

A vascular ultrasound scan assesses arteries and veins to look for conditions such as atherosclerosis, narrowing, blockages, aneurysms and blood clots. The scan uses an ultrasound probe that glides over the skin to create images. There are no injections.

We will give you clear instructions on what to do for before a vascular ultrasound scan. Wearing loose clothing that is easy to take off and put on is best. For some scans on the stomach an empty stomach will be needed. So we will advise when you need to stop eating beforehand. 

Once you are in a comfortable position, the sonographer puts gel on your skin and then finds the arteries and veins with an ultrasound probe. The pictures can then be looked at for diagnosis of the problem.

Usually about 30 – 60 minutes depending on the areas being scanned.

Not typically but there can be some mild discomfort, which feels like pressure, when deep arteries and veins in the stomach are being assessed.

After your consultation our specialist will determine if you need treatment and a scan will be booked. The specialist needs this before any of our treatments. The cost depends on the condition being scanned. Our Ultrasound Coordinator will discuss this with you. Most scans are covered by health insurance.

You are welcome to refer yourself for a scan. We will give you advice about the need for a scan and also communicate with your family doctor once the scan has been done.

Consultations in person or over the phone.