1. What Is a Vein Mapping Test?
A vein mapping test is a non-invasive procedure that detects how well blood is flowing through your veins. Doctors use Duplex Ultrasound and a transducer, which acts like a microphone, to bounce soundwaves off your veins. The speed of the echo that reflects off the vein indicates how much blood is in the vein. This helps vein doctors pinpoint broken valves, blood clots, and engorged veins.
The echoes are recorded as images or videos on a screen, creating a map of your venous pathways, so doctors can identify problems. For this procedure, you remain awake, and your doctor applies warm gel to the area they plan to study. Then, they move a transducer over the skin and observe the images produced on the screen. Book an appointment for this gentle procedure today to identify blood clots, varicose veins, spider veins, and vein disease.
2. Why Do Doctors Need to Create a Map of Your Veins?
Vein doctors create a map of your veins for multiple reasons that relate to selecting vein treatment and determining how to use it. A vein mapping test helps doctors locate potential issues like existing blood clots, faulty valves, and connecting veins that medication could travel into. By charting the path, size, and health of the veins, they can select the right treatment option.
For instance, large varicose veins might need a foam sclerosant, while small spider veins might need a liquid sclerosant. And veins that stem from vein disease require treatment of the underlying cause, as well as the surface damage, to prevent more damage from occurring. Finding the source of the surface damage requires an ultrasound test like vein mapping.
3. How Long Does a Vein Mapping Take?
Vein mapping takes an average of 30 minutes. If you’re having both legs and both arms mapped, it can take 60-90 minutes, since the doctor might need to perform the test while you’re in prone and standing positions. Since the procedure doesn’t require anesthesia, you begin the test immediately, and can leave as soon as it’s over. Some images indicate the treatment plan immediately, while others require more study by the doctor.
4. Is Vein Mapping Minimally Invasive?
A vein mapping test is neither invasive nor minimally invasive. It’s completely non-invasive. The doctor will not make any punctures or incisions, and it doesn’t require you to ingest any solutions or be injected with any dyes. You simply recline in a position where the doctor can access the vein, and they guide the device over your skin.
5. Does a Vein Mapping Ultrasound Hurt?
No, a vein mapping ultrasound does not hurt. If you’ve had an ultrasound for pregnancy or an injury, it’s a similar sensation. The most you’ll feel is mild pressure, if the vein specialist presses the transducer down to look closely at a vein. Most of these procedures are conducted on the legs, which aren’t as sensitive to pressure as the abdomen is.
6. Do I Need to Wear Loose Fitting Clothing?
If your spider veins or varicose veins are on your arms or legs, you can probably wear your own clothes during the test. Wear loose fitting clothing, or shorts and short sleeves, to make it easier for the transducer to travel the length of your limb. You can also wear a medical gown if you prefer, or if the doctor is testing multiple areas. The doctor will wipe the gel away after the test, so you won’t need a change of clothes.
7. Can Vein Mapping Identify Vein Disease?
Vein mapping is a key tool to identify vein disease. It not only protects your vascular health, but it also prevents frustration. Patients who don’t do vein mapping, and just seek cosmetic repairs, are often frustrated by what they presume to be returning varicose veins or spider veins. In actuality, if a vein is properly treated, it can’t return. But if the causative vein disease isn’t treated, new damaged veins can appear in the same vicinity. Always choose a board certified vein doctor in New Jersey with ultrasound training to prevent an ongoing development of damaged veins.
8. Does Vein Screening Measure Blood Flowing in Veins?
Vein screening uses sound waves in an innovative way to hear blood flowing through your veins. The resultant echo tells the doctor whether the vein is twisted, engorged, blocked, or experiencing valve failure. It also helps them locate the source of the issue, which is typically deeper in the vein. Finding blockages and blood clots in the vein is an essential step before injecting vein treatments. If a clot breaks loose, it can travel to your lungs and block a vital artery. This is one of the many reasons to select a vein center, not a cosmetic center for treatment.
9. Does Vein Mapping Isolate Treatment Options?
The majority of adults will develop either spider veins or varicose veins. But they don’t all need the same treatment. The best treatment depends on several factors like your symptoms, medical history, preferences, and coexisting medical conditions. Vein mapping helps vein doctors see the whole picture of your vascular health and determine the right treatment for you.
Our award-winning New Jersey vein doctors even combine treatment methods as needed for flawless results. Don’t choose a vein center that only offers one or two treatment options. Choose one that customizes care for each patient, to ensure a safe and successful outcome.
10. Is Vein Screening Used for a Bypass Graft or Dialysis?
In addition to treating spider veins, varicose veins, and vein disease, vascular mapping also helps doctors treat arteries. This includes coronary bypass graft procedures and creating hemodialysis access. Ultrasound imaging is a safe and quick tool that facilitates precise, painless procedures. Visit our Centers of Excellence in New Jersey for a vein mapping test to protect your vascular health.