Do I have to Have Surgery on My Varicose Veins?
- Posted on: Nov 15 2018
Varicose veins are incredibly problematic. At their best, these bulging, twisted veins are cosmetically unpleasant. At their worst, varicose veins can make it difficult to stand or sit for more than a few minutes at a time due to aching and cramping.
At The Vein Clinic, it is our intention to make it as easy as possible for people in the area of Columbia, SC to get screened and treated as necessary to properly address varicose veins. Part of this objective drives us to encourage patients to not allow fear to stand in their way. A consultation with a vein specialist allows you to explore potential treatment options. Contrary to common belief, many of the ways we treat varicose veins today are non-surgical.
We’ve Come a Long Way
Historically, the best way to treat saphenous vein reflux, the reason behind most varicose veins, was to remove them. This surgical procedure was referred to as vein stripping. Just by name alone, this technique sounds pretty awful. We can understand why, if a patient believes that they will need to undergo vein stripping, they would postpone seeing a vein specialist. Rest assured, we really have come a long way. Minimally invasive endovenous therapies largely replaced vein stripping nearly twenty years ago.
In our vein clinic, patients can address varicose veins with innovative therapies including VenaSeal and ClosureFast, both of which are performed with only a local anesthetic.
VenaSeal is a non-thermal technique that closes unhealthy veins with medical adhesive. The process is quite simple: A tiny IV catheter is inserted into the affected vein. The local anesthetic numbs superficial tissue and the vein itself has no nerve endings so does not feel pain. Ultrasound imaging guides the catheter to the right location, and the adhesive is inserted into the vessel. This substance immediately clings to the vein walls, causing them to stick together and shut the vein. Patients may resume normal activity right away.
ClosureFaast is a therapy that Dr. Reynolds prefers for several reasons. This technique uses radiofrequency energy to gently ablate the inner walls of the affected vein. The controlled heat causes blood to coagulate and the vein to close. Very little downtime is needed to recover from this outpatient treatment.
Might you Need Surgery for Varicose Veins?
In some cases, there is a need to remove an unhealthy vein completely. However, the technique used today would be described more accurately as a micro-surgery. Ambulatory phlebectomy is a procedure that is conducted with local anesthesia and tiny incisions. Patients can resume normal activity shortly after their procedure.