Monday, July 7, 2014

Welcome back, snowbirds!

For years, New Englanders have spent the winter months in warmer climates and then travel north when the snow stops flying. Summer can be a good time for people with vein problems — including “snowbirds”— to think about treatment.

During the warmer summer months, the heat can dilate veins and cause symptoms to worsen— which can inspire people to seek treatment. All venous procedures require compression stockings post-treatment, and because many seniors already wear compression stockings regularly, this may be less of a barrier.

Most snowbirds check in with their primary care doctor when they get to Maine or before they leave. If this is something you do, this doctor visit is a good time to discuss any achiness or pain in your legs, or ask about vein disease, such as varicose veins or venous ulcers.

In any case, vein evaluations can take place in either the patient’s summer or winter home. Phlebologists who are certified by the American Board of Phlebology (ABPh) can be found on the ABPh web page:

Finally, good communication between primary care physicans and specialists is essential to receiving good patient care. Phlebologists, too, should keep every patient’s family doctor abreast of all vein procedures and interventions, even if one doctor is in Florida and the other is in Maine. 

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