Saphenous Vein Ablation Closure
What is Saphenous Vein Ablation Closure?
Veins perform the function of transporting impure (deoxygenated) blood from the different parts of the body to the heart for purification (oxygenation). Veins in the legs may sometimes enlarge or twist and fail to perform their normal functions due to factors such as age, obesity, prolonged standing, hormonal changes (especially during menopause), leg injury or strain in the abdomen due to pregnancy or constipation. These veins are termed as varicose veins. Varicose veins can cause pain in the legs while standing, swelling, skin thickening or ulcerations. Varicose veins can be treated by a process called Saphenous Vein Ablation closure.
The Saphenous Vein Ablation closure procedure is a minimally invasive venous procedure to treat varicose veins. This procedure uses radio waves or a laser to heat the veins and close them. Following this, the nearby healthy veins will take over the normal function of carrying blood from the legs to the heart.
What happens during Saphenous Vein Ablation closure?
Saphenous Vein Ablation is an outpatient procedure and you will not need to stay in the hospital overnight. It is performed under ultrasound visualization. During the process, your leg is cleaned, and a local anesthesia is administered to the area where the surgery is to be performed. Your surgeon inserts a small needle to make a path into the vein, through which a catheter is inserted. The catheter is then moved to the varicose vein which needs to be treated. Radio waves or a laser are then passed through the catheter which heats up the walls of the veins causing it to collapse and eventually seal up. After the procedure is complete, your surgeon removes the catheter and places a bandage over the incision site.
The surgery takes approximately 30 minutes to an hour to perform. Your leg may be wrapped for a day to aid in healing.
What can I expect after Saphenous Vein Ablation closure?
After the procedure, you will be asked to wear compression stockings and resume walking normally. You should refrain from standing for long periods to help speed recovery. You may resume your normal activities within 1-14 days.
Are there any complications of the surgery?
Like all surgical procedures, Saphenous Vein Ablation closure may also be associated with certain complications that may include, but are not limited to :
- Scarring, bruising or swelling of the skin at the site of incision
- Skin burn
- Numbness or tingling sensation
- Vessel perforations
- Blood clots inside the blood vessels
- Hematoma (collection of blood outside the blood vessel)
What are the advantages of Saphenous Vein Ablation closure?
The Saphenous Vein Ablation closure procedure has the following advantages:
- Minimally invasive
- Few incisions
- Outpatient procedure
- Faster recovery
- Minimal or no scar formation
- Good cosmetic outcome
Outcomes of the procedure are usually good, with patients experiencing significant improvement in their symptoms in one or two weeks.
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