Although as many as 50% of Americans suffer from some form of vein disease, many don’t even know it. With varying forms of vein disease affecting people from their 20s to their 80s, there are many common myths about vein diseases. The team at the Artery & Vein Specialists of Idaho, a member of Bingham Healthcare, would like to provide you with some of the most common questions asked about vein disease.


Myth 1: Varicose veins are painless

Some people with varicose veins may not experience painful symptoms, but there are a lot of people who do experience pain or discomfort. Common symptoms include:


  • Soreness

  • Itching or burning

  • Cramps

  • Heavy feeling

  • Tingling and numbness


Many people do not seek treatment for this uncomfortable, and sometimes debilitating symptoms, but there are simple treatments to alleviate symptoms.


Myth 2: Varicose veins are only a cosmetic issue

The most harmful myth about vein disease is that it is a cosmetic concern rather than a legitimate disease. Unfortunately, if vein disease goes untreated, you are likely to experience continued pain, fatigue, and swelling of the legs and ankles. In more serious situations, patients can develop edema, a blood clot (DVT), and even venous ulcers


Myth 3: Creams and ointments are effective treatments

No, varicose veins cannot be cured by creams or ointments. Vein disease is an internal problem that occurs when your veins do not function properly and do not circulate blood efficiently. Rubbing cream on the bulging vein will not fix a circulation issue. There are many treatment options available to heal the cause of vein disease.


Myth 4: Surgery is the only solution

There are many outdated procedure involves removing the affected vein through an incision in your leg. Now there is a much less invasive procedure, endovenous laser therapy or EVLT, that is used to treat vein disease. An ultrasound is used to guide a laser fiber into the diseased vein to close off the vein and reroute the blood supply to neighboring healthy veins.


Myth 5: Exercise should be avoided  - false

Varicose veins are a vein disease that happens when there is a problem with blood circulation; therefore, exercising is always good for circulation. Increasing the blood circulation in your legs will help prevent blood from pooling and causing painful symptoms.


Myth 6: Compression stockings cure vein disease

Although compression stockings that provide graduated compression from the ankle up to the knee or thigh help to reduce pain and swelling, they only help to manage symptoms and do not provide a cure.  They are required to be worn after most vein procedures.


Myth 7: Finding an artery and vein specialist in Eastern Idaho is difficult

It’s easy to schedule an appointment with David Shelley, MD, board-certified vascular and interventional specialist. He is extremely well-known throughout the region, and specializes in detecting and treating vein disease and peripheral artery disease (PAD).

Schedule a FREE Leg Screening

If you are experiencing any of the symptoms mentioned here, are concerned about vein disease, or have any questions, please call Dr. Shelley’s office to schedule a free leg screening at (208) 233-4938. He sees patients in Blackfoot, Idaho Falls, Pocatello, and Soda Springs.



Specialty: Interventional Radiology & Vascular Care

Dr. Shelley is board-certified in Vascular and Interventional Radiology. He attended medical school at the Chicago Medical School. He completed his residency at the University of Cincinnati and a fellowship in Vascular and Interventional Radiology at the University of Colorado.

He is a member of the American College of Radiology, the Society of Interventional Radiology, the Western Angiographic and Interventional Society, and the American Roentgen Ray Society (the oldest radiology society in the United States).

Dr. Shelley performs minimally invasive procedures using image guidance and is highly trained in performing complex procedures such as Uterine Fibroid Embolization (alternative treatment to a hysterectomy that treats fibroid tumors without removing the uterus), Endovascular Aortic Stent Grafts (placing a tube to reinforce a weak spot in an artery), Radiofrequency Ablation (localized destruction of tumors with heat), DVT Thrombolysis (treatment aimed at dissolving blood clots), Kyphoplasty (injection of biocompatible bone cement inside fractured vertebrae), and other interventional radiology procedures.

Dr. Shelley’s wife, Carole E. Shelley, MD, is an OB/GYN and they are the proud parents of two beautiful daughters. He enjoys outdoor activities, including golf and skiing.

To learn more about interventional radiology and find a comprehensive list of the conditions and treatments offered by Dr. Shelley go to www.IdahoArteryandVein.com or view more at www.youtube.com/IdahoArteryandVein.

*This provider proudly participates in the Bingham Direct Program.







Cardio Renal Centers of America

235 Poplar St.
Blackfoot, ID 83221
(208) 785-3828

Idaho Artery and Vein - Pocatello

1151 Hospital Way, Building D, Ste 100
Pocatello, ID 83201
(208) 233-4938

Comprehensive Care Clinics

3302 Valencia Dr.
Idaho Falls, ID 83404
(208) 524-9400

Caribou Memorial Hospital - Visiting Specialist

366 South 3rd West
Soda Springs, ID 83276
(208) 233-4938