2015 Annual ACP Conference

A full few days at the 2015 ACP Annual Congress in Orlando.  The American College of Phlebology (ACP) is the premier association for vein care professionals, comprised of more than 2,000 physiians and allied health care professionals.   This august meeting draws physicians from around the world, offering contining education and training in the latest procedures,  with the goal of improving standards and the quality of patient care.

A higher level of knowledge and experience brings the opportunity of certification by The American Board of Venous & Lymphatic Medicine.  Certification demonstrates that you have met rigorous standards of education, experience and evaluation.    I am honored to have been in the first class of ABVLM Certified Diplomates.

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There is always more to learn because of innovations in this fast growing field of medicine.  Book vendors offer all the resources that are mentioned in our lectures.

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New vendors explain what they hope will be the latest and greatest breakthrough…..
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Connecting with one of our sclerotheapy vendors…

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Tomorow is another full day of learning.  I always return from this meeting with lots of motivation and learning.  I appreciate the hours of research that is shared with us all so that we can deliver the best care in vein treatment for our patients.

For all of us working in the venous disease treatment discipline of medicine, the future, while not totally devoid of challenges, is certainly bright!


This post was written by Vein and Skin Laser Center | November 14, 2015


FLOODED BASEMENT THANKFUL

 

 

Recently, while experiencing a warm, cozy moment in bed with my morning coffee and journal, I had some uplifting thoughts about the approaching Thanksgiving season and the spirit of thankfulness. I quickly, with a strong sense of purpose, wrote the thoughts down in preparation for this month’s blog.  To inspire and motive us all…

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So today is the day! I’ve set aside an hour to write the blog (I hope!) before I have to head out.  As I am walking downstairs, I hear my phone buzzing.  Oh!  It’s my sweet husband.  He just left for the office and he is probably alerting me about a traffic jam to avoid.   How considerate.  Always thinking of my safety (he sees so much in the emergency room).  He really doesn’t need to hover so.  But, instead, he says, “The basement is flooded in that spot that happens with a heavy rain.  I threw down some towels, but it needs more.  OK?  Thanks.  Bye.”

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There goes my time allotted to write the blog….As I threw down what seemed like a hundred more towels and wondered how in the world I was going to  wring them out and wash them…..Oh well, I’ll worry about that tomorrow (come on now, we are in the South and we do remember something of Scarlett O’Hara for goodness sake!)  But I digress,  I wondered about my warm fuzzy thoughts of thankfulness and realized, that REALLY, I needed to reboot.

Thankfulness over the beautiful fall leaves, fuzzy new puppies and Aunt Julia’s chocolate pie  has its place.

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But how about being thankful for the huge blessings of ….I have a house to mop up!  I have a husband who has a job.  I have food in the pantry upstairs.  A lot of people don’t. A tornado didn’t knock down my house last night.  Nobody is in my yard threatening to cut my kids heads off with a machete.  My kindergarten teacher daughter did NOT have someone storm into her sweet little classroom with a gun.  Whoa!  I know these seem dark and overly dramatic, but some people ARE dealing with this stuff.  And thankfully, I’m not. I wish nobody was.

In short, I think of the happy lady who faithfully serves everyone their food at the local bistro, with a hug and a huge smile, who replies when you ask how she is, “JUST GREAT! I WOKE UP THIS MORNING!”

So ok, I will share my other, warm, fuzzy, Hallmark thankful thoughts too (but maybe in another blog), but every now and then a wet basement and a little time slopping around in yuk is not a bad thing. It makes you think.

MOLASSES COOKIES  

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 1 cup sugar 1 cup brown sugar ½ cup butter 1 cup Crisco ½ cup molasses 2 eggs 3 teaspoons baking soda 4 cups flour 1 teaspoon cloves 1 teaspoon ginger 2 teaspoons cinnamon 1 teaspoon salt

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Cream together on medium speed sugars, molasses, and eggs.

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Sift together flour and remaining dry ingredients.

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Oops, the picture should be of baking SODA, not baking powder. BTW, I have discovered this pumpkin pie spices mixture that I use and like instead of measuring out the cloves and cinnamon.  I used a couple of teaspoons of it in this recipe as well as 1 tsp. of ginger.

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After sifting flour with dry ingredients, add by the cupful to mixed ingredients. It can be messy, so be careful to go slow!  I pulse my mixer on and off until the flour starts to disappear into the batter. Refrigerate the dough overnight, if possible. I refrigerated mine for about 6 hours at least.

 

Roll into balls….1” or so. Place balls on greased baking sheet and bake at 325 for 10 minutes. ENJOY!


This post was written by Vein and Skin Laser Center | November 5, 2015


WHY DOES VEIN TREATMENT PEAK AT YEAR’S END?

Lottie Espinosa (2)

November and December are busy months at the Vein and Skin Laser Center for multiple reasons. 

First, many patients prefer to do vein treatments when the weather is cooler. Compression stockings  are recommended after varicose vein treatments for a few days.  In the cooler months,  our female patients wear  longer dresses or pants more frequently,  which helps to conceal the compression hose.   Many patients seems to travel  less during this time of year and have more time to dedicate to the treatment process.veins compression hose pretty girl

Second, patients try to take advantage of their insurance deductible policies.  Usually later in the year is more  financially beneficial for them to have the treatment because they have met their insurance deductible.

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A third reason is the upcoming holiday season. Patients  are trying to squeeze in  procedures prior to the holiday season so they can enjoy the holidays more.

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At Vein & Skin, we are aware of all these considerations, and we try to work in as many patients as possible at the end of the year before the holidays.  We will even do treatments  between  Christmas and New Year  to help meet the end-of –year insurance  deadline for treatment prior to 2016. For patients  that are trying to get treatments before the end of the year, it is imperative to come in earlier than the planned date for treatment  so that we can get insurance approval.  Patients  can also take advantage of our  free vein screening offers to see if you qualify for insurance. Check our webpage for screening dates or just call 404-508-4320 to inquire about upcoming screening dates.

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Call our office now to save your spot.  Our staff will help  meet your scheduling needs and  work  with your insurance company to  get the approval you need for  treatment before year’s end.  Benefit from the payments you have already made on your deductible by treating yourself to beautiful legs before year’s end!

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This post was written by Vein and Skin Laser Center | November 4, 2015


TOP 6 VEIN MYTHS

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MYTH #1: My doctor says there is nothing that can be done.   

TRUTH:  We see patients frequently who have been told by their doctor that their varicose veins cannot be treated or don’t need to be treated.   All doctors are not necessarily schooled in the latest vein treatment innovations.  They frequently don’t realize how easy the treatments are now.  Patients who have symptoms bad enough to affect their lifestyle or who are suffering with discomfort will benefit significantly with treatment.  Many doctors are focused on other issues and tend to dismiss varicose vein problems, thinking they are minor.  But at Vein & Skin we see the real difference that occurs in our patients’ lifestyles after they receive treatment.

MYTH #2   Ouch! Treatment will be too painful. 

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TRUTH: This is one of the most common things that patients worry about. But now patients experience minimal discomfort because of the new teatment innovations.  With just a bit of topical anesthesia and only 30 minutes, we can do even the more difficult procedures.  Patients only feel a few local injections, which control the discomfort for the rest of the procedure.  There is a slight feeling of pressure from the delivery of the anesthetic solution around the vein.

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Sclerotherapy for those spider veins likewise has minimal discomfort. Today’s tiny needles cause significantly less discomfort than patients have previously experienced.  The saline injections that most patients remember are no longer used.  The new sclerotherapy agents do not cause pain upon injection.  In fact one of the newest sclerotherapy injections today (Asclera) is a local anesthetic, so some of our patients barely feel the injection treatment at all.  We are used to treating patients who have a fear of needle sticks and injections and find many ways to control their fear and discomfort during the procedure.

MYTH #3   I had my veins treated and they just came back. 

TRUTH: We do see patients who have had vein procedures previously and later developed new varicose veins.  Initially the patient feels that the previous treatment did not work, but then after examination, realizes that the treatment did work, but another vein has caused the problem.  This happens when another vein breaks and pressure causes development of the varicosities that appear, similar to the varicose veins the patient previously had.  These patients unfortunately have developed weak veins over time and these weak veins will gradually become a problem later on.  Another condition that we see with recurrent varicose veins is called neovascularity.  Patients who have had the old “vein stripping” in the hospital later develop more varicose veins related to this outdated stripping procedure.  The good news is that the source of the varicose veins can be treated successfully with another treatment.

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MYTH #4   I can’t take that much time out of my schedule.  

TRUTH:   It usually requires just one day to have the procedure; it is better to rest on that day, but it is possible to go back to light activity directly after the procedure. That being said, most patients do return to work and normal light activity the following day.  We also offer Saturday treatments so that patients are easily back to work on Monday. We recommend that patients walk around frequently the day of the procedure to insure a rapid recovery.

MYTH #5 Vein treatment is too expensive.

TRUTH:  Most of the more expensive vein treatments are covered by insurance and only require co-pays and deductibles.  By the end of the year, most of deductibles have already been met, so the only payment required is the co-pay, which is rather inexpensive.  Many patients only require sclerotherapy treatments, which cost $250/session.  The cost of the procedure is well worth the benefits.

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MYTH #6: My mother (aunt, grandmother) had that vein stripping surgery. 

The implication being “and I don’t want that experience.”

TRUTH   Varicose vein “stripping surgery” which required a hospital stay and weeks of recovery is no longer the standard of treatment.  Treatment is now a 30 minute procedure performed in the doctor’s office.  It is a walk-in, walk-out procedure with a very minimal recovery time.


This post was written by Vein and Skin Laser Center | November 3, 2015