Tepas Vein Center | FAQs


What are the office hours?

Our regular office hours are from 8:00 AM – 5:00 PM, Monday through Thursday and 8:00 AM – 1 PM on Friday.

Do I need to bring anything special to my first visit?

Please bring a photo ID, Insurance Card, and a list of any medications you are taking. Also, any forms or test results you have been provided, such as X-rays.

What can I expect at my first appointment?

Our registration staff will ask you to fill out a health history form. These questions are the initial part of the examination and provide us with essential information about you and your medical history. Your address, e-mail, and phone number are very important in case we need to get in touch with you. Information concerning your occupation, age, etc., is likewise important because it may have a bearing on your current health status. Additionally, this information is required by insurance networks to insure payment reimbursement. All information given to us is confidential. Please arrive 10 minutes early to complete the paperwork.

What will my co-pay or balance be at the time of my appointment?

Your insurance company can provide you with your contracted co-pay information. Our registration staff will collect your co-pay and any balance due according to your insurance benefits.

What should I do if I miss my appointment?

We ask that you call our office during regular office hours to reschedule.

Why do I need a referral from my primary care physician to see a specialist?

Our physicians are Specialists and require a referral. If you are insured by an HMO or in some cases a PPO, your health plan will probably require a referral for specialist care, as well. Our office will call you to schedule an appointment once your referral is received.

What is chronic venous hypertension?

Chronic venous hypertension (HTN) is high pressure in the veins of the legs caused by venous insufficiency where the blood leaks downward due to weak one-way valves in the veins. Symptoms of chronic venous HTN are pain in the legs, swelling, skin ulcers, and tenderness.

What are varicose veins?

Varicose veins are generally benign, but some are unsightly. Mild variations of varicose veins may show as spider veins while more serious conditions result in bulging, twisted, enlarged veins that are close to the skin’s surface. Varicose veins often cause additional swelling in the legs and left untreated can lead to more serious issues like venous ulcers or open wounds and sores. The bulging veins are a result of the one-way valves in your legs not working properly.

What is the cause of varicose veins?

The valves in your leg veins help pump the blood back to the heart. To return blood back to the heart, the veins must work against gravity. When the tiny valves within the veins become weak, the valves do not close properly and blood can flow backward, pooling in the veins, causing the veins to stretch and twist.

What are some risk factors to varicose veins?

There are several risk factors that predispose individuals to varicose veins including excessive weight, lack of exercise, smoking, age, having a family history, or a job that requires extended sitting or standing during the day. Varicose veins are known to affect more women than men due to the use of hormonal birth control and pregnancy.

What are spider veins?

Spider veins appear as thin, red, web-like blood vessels near the surface of the skin. These spider veins are considered a milder form of varicose veins. Spider veins generally appear on the legs and feet and do not cause pain or swelling. It is important to note that spider veins do not always turn out to be varicose veins. Treatment of spider veins is generally considered cosmetic in nature.

What are the symptoms of varicose veins?

Even though varicose veins may not cause pain, these veins are dark purple or blue in color or appear twisted and enlarged. For those that do experience pain, it is often described as having ‘a heavy or achy feeling’. Other symptoms may include itching and or skin discoloration around the veins themselves. Worsening pain after extended sitting or standing, or burning, throbbing, and cramping of the lower legs are also symptoms of having varicose veins.

How are varicose veins diagnosed?

Duplex ultrasound is the best way to look for varicose veins. Also known as a venous reflux ultrasound, this scan- done by a registered vascular specialist- utilizes high-frequency sound waves to obtain images of veins and measures blood flow. This painless study is used to determine if there are any problems with the vein’s valves which may result in varicose veins, pain, and swelling.

What is venous reflux?

Venous insufficiency also known as venous reflux is a medical condition in which veins in the body (most often in the legs) are not able to pump blood back to the heart and lungs. This causes blood to pool in the blood vessels so that they become enlarged (varicose) or dilated over time.

How are varicose veins treated?

Compression stockings are often the first treatment for varicose veins and many have found they reduce pain and achiness. Varicose veins, of a certain size, can be corrected through medical intervention and are often covered by your insurance. Treatment can be done in the doctor’s office, without the need for general anesthesia, and with no scaring or cutting. The procedure has a minimal recovery period and most are back to work the next day while avoiding heavy lifting for two days.

What are compression stockings?

Compression stockings steadily squeeze your legs during the day, assisting the veins and leg muscles to move blood more efficiently. The pressure against the vein walls, helps the valves inside the vein work better, minimizing pooling and backward flow.

Are all compression stockings the same?

No! There are compression stockings in different lengths and compression. Some non-medical compression stockings can be purchased over the counter. Compression stockings can also be prescribed by the doctor, with a specific pressure, to aid the patient’s ailment and help minimize symptoms.

Is there a way to reduce or prevent my chances of getting varicose veins?

Losing weight or elevating your legs, as well as, avoiding prolonged sitting or standing can help reduce symptoms of varicose veins. The use of compression stocking can also aid in circulation but compressing the veins, allowing the valves to operate properly.

What is lymphedema?

Lymphedema is caused by a blockage within the circulatory system, specifically the lymphatic system. Symptoms of lymphedema include swelling of limbs, a heavy tight feeling in the limbs, aching and tingling sensations, skin changes, sores, and severe fatigue. This condition is incurable but with the right treatment, including physical therapy and the use of compression stockings, swelling and pain can be reduced.

What causes lymphedema?

Primary lymphedema is genetic. Secondary lymphedema has a number of possible causes including, cancer surgery (the removal of lymph nodes), radiation therapy, infections like severe cellulitis, cardiovascular disease, or severe trauma or injury.

Can secondary lymphedema be avoided?

Yes! After surgery or injury, the patient should avoid heavy activity while recovering and pay particular attention to avoiding additional breaks or cuts on the skin. Additionally, raising the affected limb about the level of the heart whenever possible helps, as well as looking for changes in the skin and keeping skin supple by moisturizing it every day. Maintaining an ideal body weight may also reduce the strain on swollen areas and alleviate the symptoms.

Will my insurance cover treatment for varicose veins?

Insurance will cover the initial evaluation and ultrasound which allows for the diagnosis of venous insufficiency. Your insurance carrier and the benefits associated with your policy will determine coverage going forward for the treatment of your condition. It is always advised to be aware of these benefits prior to beginning treatment and our office will both provide information for approval and work with you to get your full coverage.