Phlebology is a medical specialty that treats venous disease (conditions affecting veins). Phlebologists provide cosmetic or medical procedures to reduce or eliminate vein appearance. They may also diagnose venous disease and treat its symptoms. While phlebologists are certified physicians who complete an additional program in phlebology, they are not qualified to perform invasive or complex venous surgeries. Instead, patients with severe venous disease or who require surgery will most likely be referred to vascular surgeons.
Patients may be diagnosed through physical evaluation (e.g. checking legs for swelling) and through duplex ultrasound imaging. During a vascular duplex ultrasound scan, a transducer (small box-shaped device) is rubbed over a patient's legs to reveal internal images of the patient's veins. Phlebologists can treat the following conditions, among others:
Phlebologists can address these conditions through minimally invasive treatments. They may use a catheter (thin tube inserted into the body) and pain-relieving local anesthesia during operative procedures. Phlebologists may perform the following treatments:
Phlebologists may work alongside vascular surgeons, cardiologists, dermatologists, and radiologists.