Diagnostic Testing for Varicose Veins- What You Need to KnowIf you have varicose veins your primary care physician may refer you to a board certified vascular surgeon for a consultation. Or upon taking a self-assessment of your symptoms, you may seek the advice of a vein specialist on your own. A proper diagnosis is critical to the effective treatment of varicose veins; so it is important to ensure appropriate diagnostic testing. There are a couple of things that will help determine the severity of your condition and determine any need for treatment.

Medical History: There are a number of factors that contribute to varicose veins including genetics. At your initial visit you should be prepared to discuss your family medical history, as well as any current medical conditions or medicines you are taking.

Physical Exam: Your physician will examine your legs while standing and sitting. You will also be asked to discuss any symptoms you are experiencing and what, if anything, aggravates symptoms or brings relief. If it is determined you likely have venous disease, further diagnostic testing may be ordered following the physical exam.

Duplex Ultrasound: Duplex vein scanning, or duplex ultrasound, allows a closer look at the superficial blood flow deep in the leg and identifies any blood clots that may be present. This diagnostic procedure is often covered by insurance when there are indicators of potential venous disease. Duplex ultrasound uses the combination of two images to provide a thorough look at the severity of your condition. Traditional ultrasound uses high-frequency sound waves to create a structural image of the blood vessels and anything possibly obstructing the flow of blood. Doppler ultrasound applies high-frequency sound waves to illustrate the actual flow or movement of blood through the veins.

During the ultrasound procedure, while you are lying on an examination table, a small amount of gel is applied to the skin to aide in the process. A technician trained in ultrasound imaging, passes a small hand-held device, the transducer, over the skin in the area being examined. The transducer sends the images to monitors, which are evaluated by the technician and physician.  Often, you will schedule an appointment at a later date to learn the results of the ultrasound.

Proper diagnostic examinations help to accurately eliminate and pinpoint disorders causing pain and swelling in the legs. Through these comprehensive assessments your physician can identify the proper course of action to bring relief of symptoms. If you are experiencing frequent pain and swelling of the legs, give Premier Vein Clinics in Knoxville a call at (865) 588-8229 or request an appointment online. We are happy to schedule a consult with one of our seven vascular surgeons.