OLYMPIC GOLD MEDALIST KICKS OFF RETHINK VARICOSE VEINS CAMPAIGN
Summer Sanders Helps Raise Awareness of Varicose Vein Health Risks
NEW YORK – April 18, 2012 – Swimming legend and Olympic Gold Medalist Summer Sanders has joined with the American College of Phlebology (ACP), Society for Vascular Surgery® (SVS) and American Venous Forum (AVF) to launch Rethink Varicose Veins.
This important educational campaign encourages those suffering from varicose veins to learn more about their condition and speak to a vein specialist about treatment options. If left untreated, varicose veins can progress to a more serious form of vein (venous) disease called chronic venous insufficiency (CVI). Only 1.9 million of the more than 30 million Americans suffering from vein disease seek treatment annually; the vast majority of sufferers remain undiagnosed and untreated.1,2,3
As part of the campaign, Sanders is sharing her experience with venous insufficiency, the underlying cause of varicose veins. She also describes how she improved following treatment.
“My legs were achy and heavy, especially after a long day. I thought these symptoms were just a natural part of living an active lifestyle, being on my feet a lot and getting older,” said Sanders. “I finally spoke with my vein specialist, who told me that these symptoms were due to venous insufficiency. He explained that if I didn’t seek treatment and my condition progressed to CVI, I could end up with more serious symptoms like skin color and texture changes, severe pain and even leg ulcers.”
With CVI and varicose veins, the valves in the leg veins that direct blood from the legs back toward the heart no longer function properly, causing blood to pool in the legs. Although this can occur at any age, increased age is a risk factor.4 Varicose veins and CVI also tend to be more prevalent in women who have been pregnant,5 people who have a family history of CVI or those whose jobs require them to spend a great deal of time standing.4 Although many people who suffer from varicose veins feel uncomfortable with their condition, they often think it is just a cosmetic problem or a natural part of the aging process, and do not seek treatment.
“Every day in our practice we see patients – both men and women – who don’t realize that CVI is a progressive disease that requires proper diagnosis and treatment,” said Mark A. Adelman, M.D., Chief of the Division of Vascular Surgery and Endovascular and Associate Professor of Surgery at NYU Langone’s Cardiac and Vascular Institute. “There are effective and minimally-invasive treatment options that are covered by many insurance plans, allowing sufferers to address the condition before it progresses further. With the Rethink Varicose Veins campaign, we hope to encourage those with varicose veins to seek treatment options that may be right for them.”
Visit www.RethinkVaricoseVeins.com to learn more about varicose veins, CVI and treatment options. Visitors to the website also can assess their risk with an online tool, find vein specialists trained in diagnosis and treatment, read more about Sanders’ experience with vein disease and treatment and share an e-card with friends or family members to encourage them to learn more about the condition.
This educational campaign is sponsored by Covidien. Summer Sanders, the spokesperson for the Rethink Varicose Veins campaign, has been compensated by Covidien.
About the Rethink Varicose Veins Partners
American College of Phlebology (ACP)
The American College of Phlebology (ACP) is the premier association for physicians and allied health professionals working in the field of phlebology (the study and treatment of venous disease). The ACP not only acts as a forum for physicians and other health professionals to exchange medical knowledge, it also offers education and training dedicated to improving the standards of medical practitioners and the quality of patient care. The ACP comprises more than 2,000 health professionals who are leaders in the field of phlebology. For more about the ACP, visit www.phlebology.org.
Society for Vascular Surgery® (SVS)
The Society for Vascular Surgery® (SVS) is a not-for-profit professional medical society, composed primarily of vascular surgeons, that seeks to advance excellence and innovation in vascular health through education, advocacy, research and public awareness. SVS is the national advocate for 3,500 specialty-trained vascular surgeons and other medical professionals who are dedicated to the prevention and cure of vascular disease. Visit its website at www.VascularWeb.org® and follow SVS on Twitter by searching for Vascular Health or at http://twitter.com/VascularHealth.
American Venous Forum (AVF)
The American Venous Forum (AVF), which is composed mostly of vascular surgeons, was born from the SVS and is the focal point for progress in venous science. Modern venous surgery, venous diagnostics and the classification of venous disease were formulated under its direction. The AVF continues to lead by improving public awareness of venous diseases, promoting research in venous and lymphatic disorders, publishing evidence-based practice guidelines and establishing cross-specialty collaborations. Visit its website at www.veinforum.org.
Covidien is a leading global healthcare products company that creates innovative medical solutions for better patient outcomes and delivers value through clinical leadership and excellence. Covidien manufactures, distributes and services a diverse range of industry-leading product lines in three segments: Medical Devices, Pharmaceuticals and Medical Supplies. With 2011 revenue of $11.6 billion, Covidien has 41,000 employees worldwide in more than 65 countries, and its products are sold in over 140 countries. Please visit www.covidien.com to learn more about our business.
1 Gloviczki, P., MD., Comerota, A., MD., Dalsing, M., MD., Eklof, B., MD., Gillespie, D., MD., Gloviczki, M., MD., Wakefield, T., MD. The care of patients with varicose veins and associated chronic venous diseases: Clinical practice guidelines of the Society for Vascular Surgery and the American Venous Forum. J Vasc Surg. 2011 May; 53(5 Suppl): 2S-48S.
2 “Age and sex composition: 2010.” In 2010 United States of America Census (c2010br-03). Web. http://www.census.gov/prod/cen2010/briefs/c2010br-03.pdf.
3 US Markets for Varicose Vein Treatment Devices 2011, Millennium Research Group. 2011.
4 Chiesa R, Marone Em, Limoni C, Volonte M, Schaefer E, Petrini O. Chronic venous insufficiency in Italy: the 24-cities cohort study. Eur J Vasc Endovasc Surg. 2005;30:422-429.
5 Criqui MH et al. Epidemiology of chronic peripheral venous disease; JJ Bergan Editor, The Vein Book, Elsevier Academic Press (2007): 30.