Non-invasive radiofrequency ablation GAINS POPULARITY in the city

People whose jobs require them to stand for long hours — bus conductors, traffic police personnel and salesman, for instance — often have to contend with a thorny problem: varicose veins.

Varicose veins are dilated, tortured, lengthened veins near the surface of the skin and commonly affect legs and ankles. They are caused when the valves in the vein weaken, and the blood that should be headed up to the heart seeps backward into the vein. One treatment for the condition is radiofrequency ablation, gaining in popularity in the city.

According to M. Bakthavatchalam, associate consultant, department of vascular and endovascular sciences at the Government Multi Super-Specialty Hospital in Omandurar, many have been seeking this treatment at the hospital’s recently-opened catheterisation lab.

“The procedure involves inserting a catheter into the affected vein, and sending a radiofrequency wave through it. The wave emits heat, and this leads to an inflammation inside the vein, fusing the walls together, and preventing blood from leaking,” he said.

Every week, the department gets about seven or eight cases of people with varicose veins,and there are already about 20 people waiting to be treated” said Dr. Bakthavatchalam, who along with senior consultant S. Jayakumar performs these procedures.

Patients with varicose veins can suffer from itching, cramps, discolouration in their legs and even blood clots. In some cases, it can lead to eczema, ulcers, pain and swelling, he said.

The procedure is non invasive, and patients can go home the next day. The results, he said, have been very good, so far.


If you are the mother of a toddler, then you must be spending most of your time this summer trying to persuade your child to eat at least one idli or a few spoons of rice. But it is likely no sweet-talking has worked.

Fussy eating among toddlers and school-going children is nothing new. But children tend to grow fussier as the mercury levels soar. Paediatricians say this loss of appetite is normal when the temperature rises, and parents need not worry.

“Normally, children have no appetite during summer. They will take plenty of water but drinking water alone will dilute electrolytes in the body. It is better to give them fluids such as buttermilk, and fruits,” said Rema Chandramohan, professor of paediatrics, Institute of Child Health, Egmore.

Temperature variations bring down the appetite drastically and make children irritable leading to conditional starvation, said A. Balachandran, paediatrician, Mehta Children’s Hospital. “Their tongue dries and loses taste. They will avoid food and demand icecream, cold water or juice,” he said.

It is important to keep them comfortable and in an airy space. Parents should give children fruits such as apples, bananas, watermelon and other seasonal fruits.

“Many think curd will give the children a cold, but it is not so. Curd is a good source of calories. Parents should also give children vegetable salads and boiled legumes as they are nutritious,” he said.

Mothers can pack food that is not spicy for their school-going children. “Spicy food will increase sweating. Give them extra bottles of water to drink. Tell them to avoid drinking water outside or water packets. Never force them to eat,” said Dr. Chandramohan.

(Reporting by Zubeda Hamid and Serena Josephine M.)

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