What do vascular surgeons do?
Vascular surgeons are highly trained specialists in the treatment of diseases of the vascular system. Your blood vessels, the cells that carry oxygen-rich blood, and the veins that carry blood back to your heart, are the pathways of your circulatory system. Without blood flowing smoothly, your body will not function. Conditions such as hardening of the arteries can create “traffic jams” in your circulatory system, blocking blood flow to any part of the body.
Some vascular surgeons specialize in one or two types of vascular interventions, so their patients receive these treatments. Vascular surgeons are trained in everything: open and complex surgery and minimally invasive endovascular procedures. Some patients need one, others need another, and most do not need surgery. Vascular surgeons are “treatment agnostic,” meaning they prefer no treatment to another. Patients can be assured that they will receive the best treatment for their particular needs.
Some types of surgeons come into your life to perform a procedure, make sure you are healed, and then leave; That is their role. The avascular surgeon can be someone who treats you continuously for decades. The vascular surgeon often has long-term relationships with patients because the vascular disease is a chronic disease. If you have vascular disease, you can trust a vascular surgeon to take care of your chronic health and consider all of your options.
When should you see a vascular surgeon?
Typically, patients are referred to a vascular surgeon by their primary care physician. Sometimes patients are presented to a vascular surgeon after an unexpected hospitalization. You may be referred to a vascular surgeon if you see your regular doctor for leg pain and find out, for example, if you have the peripheral arterial disease. If you are in a high-risk category: smoker, diabetic, and/or hypertensive, you may be a candidate to start a relationship with a vascular surgeon.
Diagnosis of vascular disease
To make a diagnosis, your vascular surgeon will begin by talking with you about your medical history, lifestyle, and symptoms and doing a physical exam. If necessary, your surgeon may order additional tests, including:
Ankle-brachial index: This is used to check the severity of PAD. During this test, blood pressure is measured in both hands and ankles, which are then compared.
Ultrasound: Ultrasound can be used to diagnose many conditions. This test uses sound waves to create images of your blood vessels and is commonly used to diagnose aneurysms, carotid artery disease, and varicose veins.
What do vascular surgeons treat?
The arteries carry blood from the heart to the rest of the body. Atherosclerosis means that these vessels are narrow and blocked by fatty cholesterol deposits. Like vessels, narrow limbs cause limb pain when exercising. A patient with a narrow leg artery will have pain in the calf when walking. This is called intermittent claudication.
As these contractions intensify, pain can occur during rest. Lastly, if an artery is completely blocked, the part of the body that supplies that artery can be irreversibly damaged. If it happens to an organ, it is pale, pulseless, cold, numb, and frozen.
Vascular surgeons specialize in this limited treatment:
Aneurysms: Some blood vessels, especially arteries, swell and pop like a balloon. These localized arterial bulges are called aneurysms.
Venous disease: Veins carry blood from the arteries back to the heart.
Vein problems are inflamed: Varicose veins and vascular surgeons work to repair or remove these abnormal veins.
Leg ulcer: Leg ulcers are often associated with poor blood supply. They can become infected and require surgical treatment. Again, vascular surgeons specialize in this.
- Circulation conditions
- Abdominal aortic aneurysm
- Hamburger disease
- Carotid artery disease
- Critical limb ischemia
- Deep vein thrombosis
- Peripheral vascular disease
- Raynaud’s phenomenon
- Renovascular hypertension
- Varicose veins
- Vascular dysfunction
The procedures are performed by vascular surgeons:
Angioplasty: This involves unblocking a narrow or blocked blood vessel. Usually, a wire passes through a narrow passage in the artery. A small deflated balloon is screwed into the narrowest space in the cable. Inflates when in a narrow section, which opens the container.
Stent placement: He goes into a very tight space, except to place a small wire cage on the balloon. As the balloon inflates, it expands the cylindrical wire cage and keeps the container open after the balloon is deflected and removed.
Embolectomy: This involves removing the clot from the blood vessels. It is usually an open surgical technique.
Bypass operation: Surgical bypass often occurs when a vessel becomes irreversibly narrowed or blocked. A new section of the vessel (often a vein or other artery) attaches to the narrow side of the original vessel and literally bypasses the blockage.