Diagnosis and Treatment of Varicose Veins

Swedish Covenant Hospital is proud to offer leading-edge treatment plans tailored to each individual patient’s symptoms, clinical scenario and specific anatomy.

Call 773-989-3957 to schedule an appointment to treat your varicose veins. 

Diagnosis of Varicose Veins

Proper diagnosis is the key to determining the right treatment options to match each patient’s unique scenario and anatomy. We begin by taking a full history of the patient, eliciting their symptoms and examining their legs. Specially trained vascular ultrasound technicians perform a complete venous duplex ultrasound to thoroughly map the anatomic areas of venous reflux in each patient.

Ultrasounds are often performed on the same day as the initial office visit so that we can correlate a patient’s symptoms to the anatomy seen on ultrasound and develop a customized treatment plan immediately.

Conservative Therapies for Varicose Vein Relief

Before undergoing treatment procedures, it is often recommended that patients with varicose veins try conservative therapy approaches first. These methods do not cure varicose veins, but may help to alleviate or reduce associated symptoms.

Conservative therapy includes:
Cases in which procedures may be recommended include:
  • Failure of conservative therapy
  • Bleeding varicose veins
  • Superficial thrombophlebitis
  • Recurrent cellulitis
  • Venous stasis dermatitis/lipodermatosclerosis
  • Venous ulcer 
  • History of healed venous ulcer

New, Unique FDA-Approved Treatments at Swedish Covenant Hospital

ClariVein®

ClariVein® is a minimally-invasive outpatient procedure that utilizes a unique, revolutionary non-thermal technology as an alternative to laser ablation and radiofrequency (RF) ablation to treat varicose veins. Swedish Covenant Hospital is one of only five ClariVein Ambassador Training Centers in the United States and the only training center in the Midwest, where physicians can observe how the procedure is performed.

How it works:

A catheter is inserted in the vein under ultrasound guidance. As the vascular surgeon withdraws the catheter, the slightly angled tip spins to evenly distribute medication to close the vein without using heat.

Benefits of ClariVein include:

  • No surgical incisions
  • No use of heat whatsoever, bypassing risks of nerve injury and reducing post-procedural pain
  • Can be done under local anesthesia (in most cases, no sedation is needed)
  • Takes only 20 minutes
  • Immediate recovery—patients get up and walk immediately following the procedure
  • No pain medication needed following the procedure

Varithena®

This new and recently FDA-approved microfoam ablation treatment can close large varicose veins without using any heat whatsoever, completely bypassing possible risks associated with thermal techniques. The technique is superior to traditional foam sclerotherapy for closing larger varicose veins because it utilizes a unique device to create bubbles of uniform density, size and stability.

How it works:

The vascular surgeon injects the microfoam directly into the varicose vein. The microfoam evenly distributes throughout the vein causing the vein to spasm and close. Once the vein is closed, the foam solution is quickly absorbed into the blood.

Benefits of Varithena® include:

  • No surgical incisions
  • No use of heat whatsoever, bypassing risks of nerve injury and reducing post-procedural pain
  • Takes only 10 minutes
  • Immediate recovery—patients get up and walk immediately following the procedure.
  • No pain medication needed following the procedure
  • Superior closure rates for larger varicose veins compared to traditional foam sclerotherapy
  • Easily absorbed into blood following the procedure
  • Eliminates the small risk of neurologic events or stroke associated with traditional foam sclerotherapy

VenaSeal®

This leading-edge and innovative procedure utilizes a catheter to distribute cyanoacrylate glue to close varicose veins.

How it works:

Using a catheter, the vascular surgeon distributes cyanoacrylate glue to effectively close varicose veins, without the risks associated with traditional thermal ablation techniques such as laser or radiofrequency (RF) ablation.

Benefits of VenaSeal® include:

  • No surgical incisions.
  • No use of heat whatsoever, bypassing risks of nerve injury and reducing post-procedural pain.
  • Takes only 30 minutes.
  • Immediate recovery—patients get up and walk immediately following the procedure.
  • No pain medication needed following the procedure.
  • Does not require use of compression stockings post-procedure.

Traditional Treatments Offered at Swedish Covenant Hospital

There are times when more traditional vein treatment options are appropriate. These treatments offered at Swedish Covenant Hospital include:

Thermal ablation (RF/laser)

This treatment uses a catheter that generates either RF energy or laser energy to heat the vein, causing it to close. Over time, the closed varicose vein will be absorbed by the body.

Foam sclerotherapy

A foam medication is injected to close smaller varicose veins. This traditional method works for smaller veins, but may not work for larger veins.

Phlebectomy

In this traditional outpatient approach to correcting varicose veins, bulging veins are removed through several small 0.5 cm incisions with local anesthesia and light sedation.

Contact Us

Call 773-989-3957 to schedule an appointment to treat your varicose veins. 





Schedule an Appointment Today!
Call 773-989-3957 to schedule an appointment to treat your varicose veins. 

Read Patient stories

Stories of compassion and healing from our family to yours.

Learn More