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Consultant Vascular Surgeon - Varicose and Thread Vein Expert


Thursday, 30 March 2017

Embarrassed by red thread veins? Do you long for clear unblemished skin?

Leading consultant vascular surgeon Michael Gaunt says modern treatment methods offer a quick and effective solution.

Most of us want to hold back the signs of ageing and reduce skin blemishes. Thread veins or spider veins are a familiar problem for men and women. The tiny red or purple broken veins are most commonly found on the face, around the cheeks and nose, but also appear on ankles and legs. They initially emerge as one or two tiny fine lines but develop a web like pattern, that enlarges across the skin; hence the term spider vein.

What causes thread veins?

The main problem is having a susceptible skin-type that copes less well with the wear and tear of everyday life. An outdoor life and sun- exposure can exacerbate the problem, as can various skin conditions. Spider veins sadly increase over time and early treatment is advisable.

“Modern treatments are minimally invasive and take minutes to perform as a walk in -walk out procedure.” 
“Patients should make informed choices when it comes to something as important as their health and wellbeing.”

How can you get rid of them?

A technique called VeinWave is predominantly used for facial thread veins and just a few sessions can be transformative. The minimally invasive procedure takes minutes to perform and you will see results almost immediately.

I have broken veins on my legs, they seem to be getting worse can you help?
Broken veins appearing on the legs are often the first sign of an underlying varicose vein problem which may not be visible. A thorough venous assessment is necessary before initiating any local treatment for leg thread veins as treatment will not be successful unless the underlying problem has been corrected first. A safe and effective treatment, injection microsclerotherapy is commonly used to decrease the visibility of unsightly thread veins most commonly found on the legs.

Top 5 Tips for seeking thread vein treatment

  • Choose an expert - Look for experienced vascular surgeon that has a long-standing reputation for delivering the highest quality of service
  • Tailored treatment– Ask for an individual venous assessment to ensure successful treatment
  • Safe cosmetic procedure - Seek well known modern treatments that conform to Medical regulations
  • Ask for advice – Take time to talk to your consultant to find the best solution for you
  • Trustworthy clinical care– Find a clinic that offers the highest standards of hygiene and clinical care

For more information visit:

Spire Norwich Hospital 01603 255574
BMI Bury St Edmunds Hospital 01223 305858
Harley Street, London 01223 305858
Spire Lea Cambridge 01223 266990
Nuffield Health Cambridge: 01223 370922
Private Secretaries: 01223 305858

Tuesday, 28 March 2017

Love your legs – step out this spring

One in four of the population suffer with varicose veins. Leading consultant vascular surgeon Michael Gaunt discusses how they can affect your long-term health and wellbeing.

For me this month marks the start of becoming more active as the evenings become lighter. Maybe there’s not quite the promise of Spring in the air but I’m positively ready to get more active and improve my wellbeing.

We all want to look good and how we care for our vascular health can play a major role in helping us achieve this. You may not initially associate varicose veins with your general health and wellbeing but when you consider that one person in four is affected in some way by varicose veins, it’s clear that simple procedures can make a big difference to a patient’s lifestyle.

Don’t ignore symptoms

Many of us choose to ignore the onset of symptoms, preferring to ‘cover-up and forget’ during the winter months. Sometimes the symptoms develop very slowly over years and you may be unaware that the changes in your legs are due to varicose veins, especially as they may not be particularly prominent or visible in some people.

Symptoms of varicose veins can include:

  • Aching, tired or heavy feeling in your legs
  • Painful throbbing, muscle cramping and swelling in your lower legs
  • Worsened pain after sitting or standing for a long time
  • Restless legs, especially at night
  • Persistent leg itching
  • Bleeding from varicose veins
  • Ulceration
  • Skin discolouration around the ankles

Simple self help

You may find mild symptoms are helped by raising your legs, by wearing support stockings or regular movement. A healthy lifestyle, eating well and finding ways to stay active is important and even more so if you have varicose veins, as weight gain can make symptoms seem worse.
Simple conservative measures such as these may offer some relief to symptoms but will not treat the underlying cause - the problematic varicose veins.

Getting active and improving circulation
You don’t have to run a marathon to improve your circulation, little changes like taking regular breaks if sitting at a desk all day, will help, and may temporarily reduce varicose vein symptoms. Step counters and fitness trackers that record the number of steps you make in a day are perfect for maintaining and highlighting your daily activity helping you boost your circulation.
Poor circulation occurs when the blood doesn’t flow freely through the body. Blood flow naturally improves with the onset of activity, it needn’t be high impact but it does need to be consistent and frequent.

Varicose veins impair circulation, that’s why they often appear raised or bobbly. Instead of all the blood from the legs returning to the heart, a proportion of blood refluxes back down the superficial veins impairing the venous circulation of the leg and giving rise to the symptoms of aching, swelling and night cramps.

Long term Complications

The best way to avoid complications from veins is to treat them early and not ignore them. In the developing stages, varicose veins and thread veins may be primarily a cosmetic problem. However, if ignored, the condition can deteriorate and a variety of complications can occur such as leg swelling, pigmentation of the skin around the ankles and leg ulcers.

Circulation is key to a healthy lifestyle. If the venous circulation is impaired for a long time the delivery of oxygen to the skin around the leg and ankle is decreased and toxins accumulate. This can develop increased venous pressure resulting in venous ulcers.

Occasionally, veins can burst causing bleeding, or the blood within the veins can clot leading to the painful condition of phlebitis or even deep vein thrombosis. People who use air travel for work or holidays may be at increased risk, particularly if those flights are long haul.

Varicose Vein Complications

  • Leg and ankle swelling
  • Discomfort and pain
  • Pigmentation of the skin
  • Venous ulcers
  • Bleeding
  • Phlebitis
  • Deep vein thrombosis

What are the benefits of varicose vein treatment?

You’ll feel more positive about your legs, the unsightly raised, bobbly varicose veins will be removed, alleviating your symptoms. Your circulation will improve and it should also help prevent further complications that varicose veins may cause.

New Treatments

You’ll be glad to hear that modern treatments are minimally invasive and may be performed under local anaesthetic as a walk-in, walk-out procedure. Having treated over 5,000 patients using the minimally invasive Endovenous Laser and ClariVein techniques, I am one of the most experienced surgeons in the UK. Also available is VeinWave treatment for unsightly facial thread veins and spider veins.

Happy, healthy legs with Michael Gaunt
For more information on varicose veins and treatments visit:

Spire Norwich Hospital 01603 255574
BMI Bury St Edmunds Hospital 01223 305858
Harley Street, London 01223 305858
Spire Lea Cambridge 01223 266990
Nuffield Health Cambridge: 01223 370922
Private Secretaries: 01223 305858