Venous Disease … Cosmetic or Serious Heath Issue? Ask the Doctor …


Dr. Jeffrey Alpern, D.O. Founder of Veins Specialists of Arizona answers a few FAQs about vein issues.

When it comes to bearing beautiful summer legs, nothing looks quite as striking as gorgeous, smooth skin. Women work hard to shave, exfoliate and buff their legs to make them look summer-ready, but even the most pampered woman can have trouble concealing spider and varicose veins.

Venous disease including spider veins and varicose veins can make legs look tired and, unfortunately, older than they should. Varicose veins are not the end of the world, but sometimes they seem as of they might be.

So what are varicose veins and what causes them? Do we need to be worried about them or are they only a cosmetic issue?

According to Dr. Jeffrey B. Alpern, D.O., Board Certified Cardiovascular Surgeon, Vein Specialist and Founder of Vein Specialists of Arizona, venous disease is often misunderstood.

“The truth of the matter is varicose veins are a medical condition and treatments are commonly covered by medical insurance. They can be a sign that a more serious health issue could exist and should be examined,” Dr. Jeffrey noted. “After seeing patients suffer from years of mismanagement and treatment failures, I established Vein Specialists of Arizona to work toward accurate diagnosis and appropriate vein treatment through the least invasive, quick and relatively painless office procedures.”


What are the causes and why should we worry about venous diseases?

Ask the Doctor: First, only women have to worry about varicose veins … Guys don’t get them, Right?
Dr. Alpern: Wrong! Varicose veins are not just a disease of women. Although, 50 to 55 percent of women suffer from some type of vein problem, about 40 to 45 percent of men in the United States also have venous issues. Varicose veins affect half of people 50 years and older.

Ask the Doctor: Crossing your legs compress your veins and can lead to varicose veins?
Dr. Alpern: Not so. How you sit does not cause varicose veins. However, how long you sit or stand can cause problems. When you stay standing or sitting for long periods of time, less blood pumps back up toward the heart. That is the real cause of varicose veins. Taking breaks and staying active helps combat the problem.

Ask the Doctor: So what is the most common cause for varicose veins?
Dr. Alpern: The number one risk factor for developing varicose veins is your family history. If your mother had them, more than likely you will too.

Ask the Doctor: Why should someone be evaluated and treated for diseases of the veins?
Dr. Alpern: An underlying venous problem can lead to more serious problems such as blood clots, bleeding, skin pigmentation and ulcers. Relatively simple procedures can eliminate these conditions before they become catastrophic and life threatening events. And as I said before, treatments for venous diseases are generally covered by health insurance plans and Medicare.


Vein Specialists of Arizona (VSA) is a state-of-the-art vein center that defines a new standard in care for the diagnosis and treatment of varicose veins, legs ulcers and chronic venous insufficiency. From vein treatments that correct existing underlying pathology to procedures that erase spider veins before the patient’s eyes, we think you will find VSA to be your best choice for venous issues. Your compassionate, effective, safe, affordable and convenient vein treatment at VSA begins with a screening exam. Please visit website, or call 623-428-0068.

Dr. Jeffrey Alpern is a Cardiovascular Surgeon who was the first D.O. to perform a heart and heart/lung transplant in the world. Among his other impressive qualifications, Dr. Alpern trained at the world renowned Cleveland Clinic and was Surgical Director of Heart and Lung Transplantation at both Temple University and Hahnemann University Hospitals in Philadelphia Pennsylvania. He currently is Director and founding member of Desert Cardiovascular Surgeons in Phoenix, and of Vein Specialists of Arizona recently located in the West Valley. Dr. Jeffrey Alpern, D.O is one of a handful of surgeons worldwide to use fast, virtually painless, safe and effective laser ablation and radiofrequency (RF) techniques for the treatment of existing varicose veins, chronic venous insufficiency and venous leg ulcers.