Vein surgery is a term used to describe procedures used to treat symptomatic varicose veins. Swelling in the ankles, a feeling of heaviness or fatigue in the legs, aching, and cramping at night are some of the most common symptoms. Veins may be enlarged or bulgy, appear bluish-purple,twisted, and branch-like on your skin. They can make you self-conscious and can be an aesthetic issue, but for some, they are also a health issue. Varicosities, or varicose veins, can be an indication ofinsufficient vein valves, which prevent blood from flowing backwards into the leg veins.
A vein specialist can discuss the best treatment options for you. Here, we will talk about some of the important and useful things you should know before getting vein surgery.
There Are Different Types of Vein Surgery
There are different types of vein surgeries that a vein doctor can perform for varicose veins. These include vein radiofrequency ablation, phlebectomy, Varithenaand ultrasound guided sclerotherapy. All are outpatient procedures that allow you to go home on the same day.
- Radiofrequency ablation uses a local anesthesia to numb the treatment area. A thin catheter is then inserted into the vein through a small opening, using only a single needle puncture. The catheter delivers radiofrequency (RF) energy to the vein wall, causing it to heat, collapse and seal shut. RF can be performed in-office in less than one hour and the patient is encouraged to walk immediately afterward.
- Phlebectomy is a less invasive way to remove varicose veins. It can be performed with local anesthesia. During this procedure, tiny punctures are made along the course of each affected vein and a special scalpel and hookare inserted into these openings to extract the vein.
- Varithena is a non-thermal, non-chemical micro foam ablation that shuts down incompetent truncal veins and varicosities.
- Ultrasound guided foam sclerotherapy is a specialized treatment for the deeper veins that cannot be seen visually. A sclerosing solution is injected directly into the incompetent veins while under ultrasound guidance. This allows veins that are below the surface of the skin to be treated. Since these veins cannot be seen visually, they would otherwise be surgically removed. This technique causes the vein to collapse and seal shut. Typically, the sessions last 15-30 minutes.
As with any surgical procedure, there are risks of complications associated with vein procedure that include pain, infection, nerve damage, and blood clots. It’s important to discuss these with your vein specialist and work together on how to minimize the risk of complications. By choosing an experienced vein specialist who performs vein surgery routinely, you are effectively minimizing vein surgery risks. An experienced specialist will also be better equipped at providing post-operative care and support throughout the recovery process.
The recovery period is minimal to none.The majority of patients treated for varicose veins walk out of the office and return to normal daily activities, including work, within two days. While the amount of post treatment pain varies from one patient to another, most require only Tylenol or Ibuprofen for any discomfort. Complete recovery, including resolution of bruising, takes 4-6 weeks.
Preparing for Vein Surgery
There is very little preparation needed for vein surgery. On the day of the surgery, wear loose, comfortable clothing, and flat shoes, and do not apply any moisturizing lotions on your legs or treatment area.
Varicose Vein Treatment in Tampa Bay, FL
In the hands of a board-certified and fellowship-trained vein specialist, you can have a successful outcome from vein surgery. Dr. Edward G. Mackay is Tampa Bay’s trusted vein specialist. Dr. Mackay specializes in the treatment of varicose veins and offers a range of treatment options, including the most advanced techniques in vein surgery.
Find out what treatment Dr. Mackay recommends and get started on the road to recovery and smoother and healthier-looking skin. To schedule a consultation, call our vein clinic today at (727) 349-5652 or use our online form to send your appointment request.