Which vein institute is right for me?
Which vein institute is right for me? Over the past 10 years, numerous vein centers and clinics have opened their doors to patients. It is important to learn about the […]
Which vein institute is right for me? Over the past 10 years, numerous vein centers and clinics have opened their doors to patients. It is important to learn about the facility you plan to visit before committing to a procedure or evaluation. Here are some questions you may want to ask:
- Is your sonographer a Registered Vascular Technologist (RVT)? Diagnosing venous insufficiency often requires a special set of ultrasound skills obtained after specific training. An RVT sonographer will provide reassurance about the quality of ultrasound images used to make your diagnosis.
- What is your physician’s specialty? Traditionally, vascular surgeons and interventional radiologists have taken the lead on minimally invasive venous treatments. In particular, interventional radiologists are trained to utilize ultrasound to access difficult structures. Vascular surgeons will have extensive experience in physically removing vessels such as phlebectomy or vein stripping. You will notice that other specialties are also involved in many vein clinics. By asking questions, you will be able to assess whether your physician has been adequately trained in venous diagnosis and treatment.
- Location. Convenience is certainly important. Most venous insufficiency treatments are performed as an outpatient and do not require an overnight stay. That being said, traveling a bit further for the right vein center may be worth the hassle for the day. As you research treatment facilities, don’t just look for the closest- look for the best.
- Testimonials. Reading testimonials will give you an idea about what the practice takes pride in. You will read about customer service, outcomes and costs. Find a testimonial that speaks to you and what is important to you. This can help guide your selection.
- What treatment options are available? Vein treatment can be complicated involving multiple procedures and tools. Reviewing the number of options (even if you do not completely understand all of them) will be helpful in ascertaining how “complete” a practice is. Do they offer compression stockings? Do they use laser or radiofrequency ablation? How about the latest innovations such as Venaseal?
- Do you take my insurance? Many vein treatment procedures are covered by insurance policies including Medicare. Be sure to take full advantage of your existing coverage by double checking with the vein center. Initially, you want to check if your consultation visit and ultrasound will be covered so you can then make the right decision.
- Do you offer a free screening? This is an excellent way to get to know a practice with no financial commitment. Attending a free screening allows you to learn about vein disease and the facility without the hassles of insurance approval and paperwork. If you like the practice, you can pursue a formal consultation if needed.