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Up until recently, Monica couldn’t dance. In fact, she could barely walk.

Her daily life had been impacted because her veins were not working properly.

Monica has always been an active and athletic adult. She was a leading drill officer for the Corrections Officer Academy, frequently rode her bike to work, and enjoyed swimming and riding horses.

Her life was affected in a severe way when, approximately a year ago, she began feeling incredible pain in her legs.

“The pain was in my feet and up through my thighs. Next thing you know, I couldn’t bend my legs,” shares Monica.

What she experienced, were the painful and life-altering symptoms of venous insufficiency. This condition is when your veins have trouble with getting blood from your limbs back to your heart, causing blood to pool in your legs. This caused severe pain and swelling in Monica’s legs and feet, preventing her from even wiggling her toes.

“Her symptoms were so debilitating she couldn’t walk without using a walker, and resorted to using her lymphedema pump three hours a day just to function instead of the recommended one hour daily,” says Jennifer Clark, Certified Physician’s Assistant and Vascular Specialist.

Diagnosis of Monica’s Condition

To diagnose Monica’s condition, our Vascular Specialists examined her legs and then took a painless ultrasound picture of her veins at Pima Heart and Vascular’s Vein Center.

As Monica’s legs continued to swell, she could no longer fit her feet into the shoes she normally wore and ended up using a wheelchair.

Monica had a vein ablation performed in October and even just a few days following her procedure, she noted remarkable results.

An ablation is a minimally invasive office-based outpatient procedure where radiofrequency energy is used to create heat that collapses the vein walls. Once a diseased vein is closed, the blood reroutes to healthy veins in the limb.

“Within days, I was walking, and I could wiggle my toes!”

“We all deserve to feel good.”

Monica endured the pain of her venous insufficiency for well over a year, but she shares this advice with others:

“Don’t accept the pain. Go get help because there is something that could be done. We all deserve to feel good,” she says.

Monica reports that she has 90 percent less pain in her legs and is back to exercising — and dancing— once more.

“I truly felt like I was part of the team. I felt very comfortable and respected,” she concludes.