Vascular surgeons specialise in the treatment of vascular diseases, including vascular infections, stroke, vasculitis and many more. Basically, vascular diseases occur in the arteries and veins of your body. These blood vessels are responsible for pumping blood and therefore oxygen throughout the body.
What takes place at a vascular surgeon consultation?
Vascular surgeons will first analyse their patient and decide whether using diet, exercise and medication as an initial mode of treatment is enough. In this case, they will closely monitor the condition of the patient following lifestyle recommendations and intervene with surgery only if necessary. Vascular surgeons may also require their patient to undergo further vascular imaging tests, including ultrasounds and CT scans to make the proper diagnosis and choose the best treatment option.
If surgery is required, they will use the type of intervention best suited to the situation. Here are some types of procedures that may be used:
Angioplasty: Blocked arteries are opened to allow normal flow of blood to the heart. This is a fairly non-invasive procedure where an artery of the arm or leg is selected then a catheter inserted to carry out the procedure, which involves inflating a balloon to re-open the artery.
Angiography: This is an imaging procedure used to obtain a visual picture of the arteries inside your heart, brain and kidneys. This allows any blockages to be viewed and treated.
Thrombectomy: This is a procedure in which blood clots are removed from blocked blood vessels. Blood clots can prevent adequate flow to the major body organs and can occur following injuries.
There are many more surgical procedures that vascular surgeons perform. Blockages can occur in all parts of the body and can cause complications if not treated early on.
How to prepare for your appointment:
Before attending your appointment with your vascular surgeon, it is strongly advised that your research your medical condition and have a look at what treatment options are available. Although your friendly vascular surgeon will explain everything to you, being educated in this area will help you understand their advice better. There may be various procedures available for a particular vascular disease, and it can be really helpful if you already have some knowledge of these.
It should also be understood that appointments with vascular surgeons are nothing to be afraid of. In fact, a large number of conditions are initially treated using simple lifestyle changes and medications, and surgery is a last resort.