Thursday, November 05, 2009


I requested a copy of my medical records from the first vein clinic. They arrived yesterday and I was a bit embarrassed, after I read them right side up, to find that they actually said "in no acute distress." That's what I get for reading things upside-down...Too bad, since the "acute distress" part made for such a good story! 

I had a followup visit today with Dr. W at the second vein clinic. He and the ultrasound tech did a lengthy exam of the veins on both legs, especially the area behind my left knee that developed a blood clot during my last pregnancy. The verdict: he recommended endovenous laser treatment (EVLT) of the greater saphenous vein. He does this right in his office with only local anesthesia along the vein. The varicosities behind my left knee are next to some nerve bundles, so instead of removing those veins via tiny incisions, he would do sclerotherapy injections in that area. He reiterated that while these procedures will permanently fix the affected veins, it's possible that, down the road and especially after more pregnancies, other veins may develop varicosities. He said that if my right leg isn't bothering me that much, it's not worth treating.

At the end of the visit, I asked him if he charged any "cosmetic fees." He looked a bit perplexed. I explained that the first vein specialist I saw charged a "cosmetic fee" of $400 per leg, even for procedures that were medically indicated and that would be reimbursed by insurance. Dr. W asked why he charged this. I said that Dr. F had explained that it was because "we are very meticulous with our work." Dr. W replied, "Well, I guess I'll be very un-meticulous and not charge you an extra $400!" I joked that he should start charging this fee so he could buy fancy office furniture.

I think I'm going to do it, since my leg is really bothering me. Dr. W's office is working on getting a pre-approval letter from my insurance company, and then I can schedule the procedure. I want to get it done before the end of the year, since both Eric and I have had a lot of medical expenses this year (minor knee surgery for him, pregnancy & birth for me) and have hit our deductibles for the year.


  1. Hi Rixa,
    I once suffered terribly from varicose veins, but I found a wonderful natural program that completely helped them disappear and stopped the pain. Here is a similar success story:
    This is a candida program that I followed - here is the exact program:
    I don't know if it would help you out, but just thought I'd post about it in case you may be interested. :) All my best!

  2. You had a blot clot? Sh1t! Glad your alright.

  3. pinky--it was a superficial clot, and luckily those aren't dangerous like DVT is. But still, not something I want to happen again.

  4. Gosh, that first doctor sounds like the poster child of why you should always a get a second opinion if you don't like the first one. I'm glad the procedure will be minimally invasive. What did he say the recovery time will be? Good luck with it all.

  5. I have a similar story I could tell regarding partially tearing a ligament in my Dr. who wanted to do surgery on me that would require 12 MONTHS of therapy to recover from...another that told me that surgery would not make me any better than 6 weeks of therapy would. He did warn me that whichever route I chose, I'd be looking at having a knee replacement in about 1 years.

    I opted for the 6 weeks of therapy. That was almost 15 years ago, and I still haven't gotten that knee replacement.

  6. That should have read that I'd be expecting surgery in 10 years, not 1....


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