Troubling Varicose Veins a Thing of the Past for Richton Park Woman

Varicose veins of the legs can cause a variety of troubling symptoms: throbbing, swelling and burning, not to mention the twisted, bulging appearance that usually accompanies them.

For Samica Brickford of Richton Park, one symptom stands out in her mind. "I had the sensation of something crawling up my leg," the 45-year-old kindergarten teacher explains. "One time I was standing up giving a presentation, and I kept reaching down to brush something off my leg. But there wasn't anything there. It was very embarrassing."

Samica experienced several other uncomfortable symptoms, too. "As a kindergarten teacher, I need to stand, I need to dance, I need to run," she said.

"Sometimes the pain was so bad, I couldn't walk."

Eventually, Samica decided she'd had enough and called the experts at the Advanced Vein and Vascular Center, located at Ingalls Family Care Center in Tinley Park.

Her first visit with interventional radiologist Kevin Keele, M.D., involved what's called a "vein mapping" procedure, where a painless Doppler ultrasound study of the affected leg determines which treatment would be most effective.

After studying Samica's results, Dr. Keele recommended a laser vein ablation, in which laser or radiofrequency energy is applied to the inside of the vein and seals it closed.

"Once the diseased vein is closed, other healthy veins take over to carry blood from the leg, re-establishing normal flow," Dr. Keele explained.

"I was kind of scared to make the first appointment," she admits, "but once I had it done, I realized there wasn't anything to be afraid of."

Less than a week after Samica had the procedure, she was back to work. And a week after that, she was back to her favorite physical activity: karate. "I'm a very active person," she adds. "Before the procedure, it was hard to stand and kick. Now, I have no problems at all."

For more information about varicose vein treatment, call the Advanced Vein and Vascular Center at 708.915.7518.M

About Varicose Veins

Varicose veins are bulging superficial veins that can be felt beneath the skin, generally larger than 3-mm in diameter, and they affect half of all people over age 50. They are usually located on the inside of the calf or thigh and develop due to weakness of the vein wall and loss of valve function. Under the pressure of gravity, they continue to enlarge, and in the course of time, they may become elongated, twisted, pouched and thickened.

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