Treatments for troublesome varicose veins

Published April 6, 2021

Adam V Sutton, MD, Dermatology

By Adam V Sutton, MD, Dermatology

picture of a doctor examining a patient's varicose veins

Swelling, pain, even ulcers – varicose veins can cause trouble. If your varicose veins are visible but don't hurt or swell, they're generally not dangerous. If, however, your varicose veins cause symptoms, you should see a doctor. Thankfully, there are many treatments available for varicose veins.

Lifestyle changes to remove varicose veins

In many patients we like to start with conservative measures to see if the varicose veins improve with simple lifestyle changes.

  • Compression socks. Even if you've tried compression socks before, don't rule them out. A proper fit makes a world of difference. I have patients that come in and say they hate compression socks, but once we get them in the right size and fit, they often end up really liking how their legs feel in compression socks. 
  • Exercise. Physical activity is really good for our vein circulation. Activating the leg muscles helps move your blood back to your heart, increasing circulation
  • Elevation. Elevating the legs uses gravity to help return blood from the legs back to the heart. When you are resting or sleeping, keep your legs elevated to increase circulation
  • Healthy weight. Losing weight takes some pressure off of your varicose veins and prevents them from getting worse
Make a plan for varicose veins
To schedule an appointment with a Nebraska Medicine dermatologist, call 800.922.0000.


If varicose veins result in symptoms and impair your quality of life, minimally invasive techniques may be a great option. All of these treatments are done under local anesthesia on an outpatient basis. Patients walk in and walk right back out after their procedure.

  • Endovenous laser ablation therapy. For symptomatic varicose veins, this treatment uses a laser that is placed within a vein to close the abnormal diseased vein from the inside. With the abnormal vein closed, blood moves to the healthy veins
  • Endovenous chemical ablation. For tortuous varicose veins, this procedure uses foam to selectively inject enlarged and abnormal veins, leading to scarring of the veins and ultimately improving blood flow
  • Surgical removal. For abnormal veins very close to the surface, we surgically remove the vein in a painless procedure

Comprehensive vein program

Dermatologist Ashley Wysong, MD, and I are both certified by the American Board of Venolymphatic Medicine (ABVLM).

We also have a full-time registered vascular technologist (RVT) who specializes in venous disease. The RVT scans the veins using an ultrasound to help diagnose different disease inside the body. 

When a patient comes in for a vein consult, the RVT scans their veins. In real time, Dr. Wysong or I review their ultrasound and go over the patient's results. We come up with the vein treatment plan at that time. Patients love that we're able to look at the ultrasounds and come up with a plan on the same day.

Varicose veins can be a bother, but many treatments are available. Come see us if your varicose veins are affecting your quality of life.