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Health & Wellness

Hello Short Shorts and Bye Bye Health Problems

Published in the August 2023 Issue Published online: Aug 05, 2023 East Idaho Health
Viewed 482 time(s)

By Brian Ziel

Summer season brings longer days and shorter nights. Barbecues with friends. Trips into the mountains. Soaring temperatures. And shorts season.

Some people look forward to wearing shorts and summer dresses all year long, while others dread the season’s shorter fashions because of spider and varicose veins. While many people consider colorful or bulging veins right underneath the surface of the skin to simply be a cosmetic issue, it’s actually a sign of something much more serious. If you feel like you have unsightly veins, you may have chronic venous insufficiency.

Chronic venous insufficiency occurs when the valves in leg veins become damaged and no longer support normal blood flow. Typically, these valves close to help pump blood back to your heart. When the valves are damaged, they can’t close properly and gravity works against your body, pulling blood backward into your legs. As a result, blood can pool, people can experience skin discoloration, swelling, inflammation and eventually ulcers and serious skin infections.

“Venous disease is more prevalent in the United States than coronary artery disease, peripheral arterial disease, congestive heart failure, and stroke combined,” said board certified vascular surgeon Dr. Warren Albrecht. “Unfortunately, for years, people have been told the myth that issues with their veins are simply cosmetic. This is not true and it is causing countless people to ignore the early warning signs and miss opportunities for early intervention.”

It is important to understand that spider veins, varicose veins and even venous ulcers are interconnected. They are all symptoms of venous disease and not different diseases.

Dr. Albrecht has helped thousands of patients improve their overall health and regain their confidence by addressing the underlying cause of their venous disease

“As a vascular surgeon, I’m focused on addressing the root cause of the issue. Patients need to make sure they are not just treating the visible signs of varicose veins because this can cause them to face bigger health issues in the future,” said Dr. Albrecht. “Fortunately, by treating the causes of venous disease, we also address cosmetic concerns during the process.”

Treatment for chronic venous insufficiency has come a long way over the last 20 years. Today, most treatments take about 30 minutes and involve minimal to no downtime and discomfort. 

Dr. Albrecht provides multiple nonsurgical treatment options for his patients at Snake River Vascular Surgery including endovenous ablation, which targets larger veins with valves that are no longer working. The diseased veins remain in place, so patients experience fast recovery times with minimal bleeding or bruising. Following treatment, the veins close and blood flow is naturally redirected to healthy veins. Blood flow becomes more efficient, helping stop the progression of disease.

Dr. Albrecht is also an expert in performing micro phlebectomy. During this minimally invasive procedure, he makes small incisions to interrupt varicose veins near the surface of the skin and removes the problem segments.

Chronic venous insufficiency can affect people of all ages. Dr. Albrecht has treated patients in their early 20s, all the way to patients in their late 80s. Patients don’t need to wait until they are in pain or facing more serious health complications to seek treatment. Most insurance plans cover care for patients who just have physical signs of chronic venous insufficiency

“If you are concerned about how your veins look, it is time to see a doctor,” said Dr. Albrecht.

Short shorts may never be your style, but if you have varicose or spider veins, don’t let another season pass you by without addressing this important health issue. 




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