Benefits of Ambulatory Phlebectomy

Updated on: August 18, 2014

Those in the Dakota Dunes and Sioux City, Iowa areas as well as in other parts of the country who are experiencing larger superficial varicose veins may find ambulatory phlebectomy a very beneficial procedure. This treatment uses tiny incisions and vein hooks to remove problem veins to get rid of the unsightly veins as well as the pain and heaviness often associated with them. It is minimally-invasive and does not require a general anesthetic and the associated downtime and recovery period that many traditional vein stripping procedures require.

With reduced anesthesia, it helps to increase the safety of the procedure and lowers the risk of possible complications and side effects. There may even be a decreased recurrence of varicose veins in early postoperative period compared to other procedures using occlusion. It is important that patients who are interested in ambulatory phlebectomy or any other procedure speak with a Dakota Dunes or Sioux City vein specialist to help them determine their candidacy for this and other procedures. Patients should disclose their medical history and any medical conditions from which they suffer so the physician may accurately determine if this procedure is safe for them.

Ambulatory phlebectomy starts with the patient standing and the physician marking the veins to be removed using a surgical marker. Standing is the position in which the veins are most easily identifiable. The patient then lies on his or her back on a table and the area is cleaned using an antiseptic solution. Next, the local anesthetic is injected for patient comfort throughout the procedure. In many cases, a large volume of a low concentration anesthetic may be used, as the fluid numbs the surrounding area and may also be helpful in pulling veins away from nearby tissue and helps to compress nearby capillaries to help reduce postoperative bleeding.

With the treatment area numbed with the anesthetic, tiny incisions are then made along the veins and vein hooks are used to remove the veins. The incisions used are so small that sutures are not required with this procedure. What's more, the excess fluid may drain postoperatively through the incisions. Pads are placed next to the leg to absorb any fluids and the leg is wrapped tightly using a compression bandage. The compression bandage should be left in place for a couple of days and then compression stockings may be worn for a few weeks to aid in the healing process.

Patients may be encouraged to walk shortly after the procedure, as the contraction of the surrounding leg muscles may help to rid the area of excess fluid, reduce the risk of blood clots and may help with the healing process. Patients may return to work after a few days, but should avoid strenuous activities such as heavy lifting and prolonged standing to help ensure proper healing throughout the healing process.

As with most procedures, there are certain complications and side effects of which the patient should be aware before undergoing ambulatory phlebectomy. Common complications with many procedures may include bleeding and infection, but with the small incisions used with ambulatory phlebectomy these complications are less common than with vein stripping procedures. Most incisions heal without scarring, although those with darker skin may require a longer period before the incisions fade completely. Other potential side effects and complications include discoloration of the surrounding skin, numbness and tingling. Patients should consult a specialist in their area to go over possible complications and to learn more about them.

Patients should also speak with a specialist and their insurance company to help them determine if their insurance plan will cover the cost of treatment.

Learn more about ambulatory phlebectomy in Dakota Dunes and Sioux City, Iowa.

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