How do I know I need to see a vascular surgeon?

Many people are out there who don’t know what vascular surgeons are and what they do? 

So, let start with the introduction first.

What is a Vascular Surgeon?

Vascular surgeons are highly trained specialists who treat diseases related to vascular problems and conditions related to the circulatory system and blood vessels, like  Peripheral Artery Disease (PAD), varicose veins or spider veins, venous leg ulcers, any blood clot and many more diseases related to arteries and veins.  

I hope now readers will have understood what vascular surgeons are what they do. 

Diseases related to arteries, veins or any type of blood vessels diseases are quite common among people. 

The most common vascular diseases are- Pulmonary Embolism (blood clots), Abdominal Aortic Aneurysm (AAA), Deep Vein Thrombosis (DVT), Carotid Artery Disease (CAD), Varicose or Spider Veins, Peripheral Artery Disease (PAD), Arteriovenous Malformation (AVM), and many more is in the list.

How do I know I need to see a vascular surgeon?

People ask me questions like How do I know I need to visit a vascular surgeon? Is it too late to see a vascular surgeon or is it early to see a vascular surgeon? Their queries never ends. As a vascular surgeon, I have to go through this on a daily basis and I get happiness by clearing their doubts and solving their queries. 

A lot of patients come to me for their vascular treatment but more than half of the patients come to me when it’s too late. Even a few patient comes to me with 20 years old vascular problem.

Neglecting vascular disease and keeping them untreated for years & years is very risky.

 As a doctor, I will suggest you not to ignore any health-related issue and see a doctor as soon as possible before it’s too late. 

So, now come to the point

How would you know that now you need to go to a vascular surgeon?

Look, our body gives us indications when we suffer from any kind of disease. We need to recognize and understand those indications before it’s too late 

Indications might be in any form. It might be a severe pain or fever that keeps on coming and going it can be anything.

I’m mentioning those indications through which you will come to know that now you should need to see a vascular surgeon.

If you come to know that you are suffering from vascular veins or spider veins, Peripheral Artery Disease (PAD) or any disease, you should go and visit a vascular surgeon without waiting for any indications. 

Indications not to ignore:

  • Severe pain in leg
  • Leg pain while walking or resting
  • Non-healing sores on feet
  • Discolored hands/ feet
  • Cluster of veins on legs
  • Bulging & painful legs
  • Bulging and twisted veins
  • Veins appear dark blue or purple in color
  • Swelling
  • Numbness
  • Tingling sensation
  • Heaviness in the leg

If your body is giving these indications it means 100% chances are there that you are suffering from any type of vascular disease and you need to consult and see a vascular surgeon as soon as possible.

Each and every vascular disease has different – different symptoms but some of them are similar.

Here, I’m  mentioning the signs and symptoms of a few common vascular diseases

Common Vascular Diseases

Pulmonary Embolisms 

This disease is one of the most common cardiovascular diseases. Pulmonary embolism is a disease that caused a blockage in the pulmonary artery which supplies blood to the lungs. It’s a very serious condition it can damage a person’s heart or other organs.

Signs & Symptoms 

  • Chest pain (sharp & stabbing)
  • Rapid heartbeat
  • Shortness of breath
  • Dizziness
  • Rapid breathing
  • Cough (it can be dry cough or cough with blood & mucus)

Pelvic Congestion Syndrome (PCS)

This condition is very common among women. Pelvic  Congestion Syndrome is caused when varicose veins are formed in the pelvic region.

Signs & Symptoms 

  • Dull pain in the pelvic area
  • Painful menstruation (dysmenorrhea)
  • Abnormal bleeding during menstruation
  • Backache 
  • Hip pain
  • Increased urination
  • Abnormal vaginal discharge
  • Fatigue 
  • Tenderness in the abdomen
  • Swelling of vagina 
  • Varicose veins around vulva, legs or buttocks

Aneurysm

This condition refers to the enlargement of an artery which occurs when the arterial wall becomes weak. 

Aneurysm doesn’t show any symptoms. Usually, Aneurysm shows symptoms at a later stage when the artery becomes very large or ruptured.

Signs & Symptoms 

  • Severe pain at the site of aneurysm
  • Rapid heart rate
  • Dizziness
  • Nausea or vomiting
  • Low blood pressure
  • Clammy skin 
  • Internal bleeding (In severe case)

Deep Veins Thrombosis (DVT)

When blood clot forms in the veins deep inside the body this condition is known as Deep Veins Thrombosis. It can occur in any part of the body but usually, it occurs in the thigh and leg veins. 

If this condition left untreated it can cause Pulmonary Embolisms, a life-threatening disease. 

Signs & Symptoms 

  • Pain in the affected leg 
  • Leg cramping and soreness
  • Red or discolored skin
  • Feeling of warmth in the affected leg 

Spider veins

Spider veins refer to clusters of tiny blood vessels occur close to the surface of the skin.

Spider veins and varicose veins both are very similar to each other. You can say that spider veins are a smaller version of varicose veins.

Signs & Symptoms 

  • Swelling leg
  • Cramping of the legs 
  • Itching legs
  • Heaviness and aching in legs
  • Throbbing and stabbing pain in leg

Varicose veins

This condition refers to enlarge, twisted and bulging veins. It mostly occurs in the legs and thighs.

Signs & Symptoms 

  • Veins will appear dark blue or purple in color
  • Twisted and bulging veins will appear
  • Aching 
  • Heavy feeling in leg
  • Burning sensation in legs
  • Throbbing and stabbing pain in leg
  • Swelling leg
  • Skin discoloration around affected area

Venous leg ulcer

Venous leg ulcer is a long-lasting soreness that develops inside the leg which takes too much time to heal.

Signs & Symptoms 

  • Itching
  • Pain
  • Swelling
  • Discoloration
  • Hardened skin around the ulcer
  • Foul-smelling Liquid fluid coming out from the sore 

The given signs and symptoms of vascular diseases may vary according to their position.

Is Vascular disease only can be cured only by surgery?

My answer is No, not at all. Many people have the misconception that vascular diseases can be cured only by surgery. 

No, it is not true. 

Besides surgery there are numerous treatment options are available for vascular diseases. In fact, I have treated many such cases which required neither any surgery or any other treatment. They cured by using some medicines and exercises only. 

What type of treatment a vascular patient requires is totally depends upon the case. 

Treatment options for vascular diseases

 A Vascular surgeon will never ask for surgery as soon as you go because surgery is not the one & only option to cure vascular conditions. Besides surgery, numerous treatment options are available for vascular diseases. 

Few of them are- 

  • Venaseal procedure
  • Radiofrequency Ablation (RFA)
  • Endovenous Laser Treatment, or EVLT
  • Sclerotherapy

As a vascular surgeon, I will advise all that health issues shouldn’t be neglect.

If you’re suffering from any kind of vascular disease,  Do not be afraid to go to the doctor for fear of operation. Surgeons or doctors never suggest surgery if not required. 

So, see vascular surgeon before it get too late. 

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