One fact difficult for varicose vein patients to face is that the venous insufficiency responsible for these abnormal vessels gets worse as time passes. The top priority of a vein doctor is avoiding a deep vein thrombosis by treating the underlying vascular problem that causes varicose vessels. The next is getting rid of large, troublesome veins using a procedure such as a microphlebectomy.
Patients usually undergo this outpatient procedure at a vein clinic. The physicians who perform it are typically interventional radiologists or vascular surgeons. Healthcare professionals sometimes refer to this treatment as a stab phlebectomy or a mini-phlebectomy. Following a local anesthetic, the vein specialist makes a number of very small incisions that resemble punctures. Although these incisions are too small to require stitches, the physician is able to remove varicose vessels through them, Medline Plus notes. Vein doctors often turn to this procedure when the vessels that need treatment are too big for sclerotherapy yet too small to require laser therapy. A microphlebectomy becomes a consideration once conservative methods such as shedding extra pounds, avoiding prolonged periods of sitting or standing, or using compression stockings are not effective, according to UCLA Health.
There is little patients need to do to prepare for a microphlebectomy, according to the Creighton University Vascular Center. The vein clinic staff provides pre-appointment instructions upon scheduling the procedure. Dressing in loose-fitting clothes with comfortable shoes is a good idea. Patients should avoid applying any lotion or oil to the affected limbs prior to the appointment and should bring with them the compression stockings ordered by the physician. Once the patient has arrived and has changed into a procedure gown, the vein specialist uses a marker to trace vessels targeted for elimination. While the individual is on a table, staff members clean areas selected for treatment. The next step is administering local anesthesia. After it has taken effect, the physician places a tiny incision over each targeted vein. Using an implement that resembles a very small crochet hook, the doctor eliminates each vessel by pulling it through the incision in a process that is normally painless. A typical treatment session ranges from 30 minutes to two hours. Once the treated area has a compression bandage, individuals get up and begin walking. Pre-discharge instructions explain home care and any limitations the patient has after the procedure. Although they must avoid strenuous activities, most patients are able to resume their normal routines as soon as they return to their homes. The recovery period normally includes wearing compression stockings for an interval specified by the vein specialist. Vein doctors caution that no therapy can prevent the development of new varicose veins. Because of this, patients sometimes return for periodic treatment.