Choosing a physician

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Updated: 4/11/2007 2:49 pm
The type of doctor you choose to treat a vein condition may depend on the severity of your problem. For example, superficial spider veins on the face or legs may be treated by a dermatologist, plastic surgeon, or even a general practitioner who's trained in sclerotherapy (sklair-oh-THAIR-uh-pee), or vein injection. More serious conditions, such as blood clots or large varicose veins of the legs, should be addressed by a vascular surgeon. Doctors who specialize exclusively in vein problems are known as phlebologists (fleh-BAWL-oh-jihsts). The more advanced the condition, the more important it is that you choose someone with special experience in that area. Find out what kind of degrees the doctor holds, how long he or she has been in practice, and what continuing education courses, if any, have been attended. Ask how often the doctor performs treatment for conditions similar to yours. Physicians who are board-certified typically have more extensive training or have passed certain specialty exams, though they may not necessarily be superior to non-board-certified doctors. Other factors to consider include the doctor's ability to listen and communicate, how you're treated by the staff, and if you feel comfortable during your visit.

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