What is Minimally Invasive Vein Surgery?
Surgery may be the best treatment for varicose veins in legs that do not respond well to other options. Our goal with minimally invasive surgery, or phlebectomy, is to remove varicosities to achieve the best cosmetic results with minimal scarring and to relieve symptoms of pain or swelling that often accompany varicose veins.
This surgery is performed in our office and under local anesthesia, so there is little down time and patients are able to return home shortly after.
Prior to the procedure, anesthesia is applied to the affected areas, and then a tiny instrument is threaded through a small puncture in order to remove the damaged veins. The veins are gently pulled through the puncture, and then blood flow is automatically rerouted through healthier ones.
No stitches are required and the puncture areas are hardly visible making this an ideal option for patients wanting to achieve both excellent therapeutic and cosmetic results.
Am I a good candidate for minimally invasive vein surgery?
Surgery is typically reserved for those with very large varicose veins who have not had success initially with other therapies. Varicose veins best treated with surgery are usually extremely enlarged and bulging causing frequent discomfort and pain to the legs.
What are the risks or side effects of minimally invasive vein surgery?
Minimally invasive surgery for varicose veins is very safe compared to traditional or previous phlebectomy procedures. There is virtually no scarring, and patients are typically thrilled with the aesthetically pleasing results. Following your procedure, our team will work with you closely on follow-up care to ensure that your puncture areas are healing properly.
What does recovery look like with minimally invasive vein surgery?
Once the procedure is complete, a compression wrap will be placed on your leg, and you will be able to walk and return home immediately. Most patients experience minimal to no pain and can resume normal activities within 24 hours. However, sitting or standing for long periods of time, as well as working out, swimming, heavy lifting, and intense exercise should be avoided for approximately a week. We highly encourage walking as much as you like.
Your board-certified vascular surgeon will advise you about how long to wear compression stockings and any other directions necessary to promote healing.
Our patients who undergo minimally invasive surgery feel more confident about the appearance of their legs and are relieved to be free of painful varicose vein symptoms.
Please contact us at VeinSolutions in Austin and Georgetown to schedule an appointment with one of our board-certified vascular surgeons who will help determine if this treatment or another minimally-invasive cosmetic procedure is right for you.
Minimally Invasive Vein Surgery FAQ
How do I know if vein surgery is the best option?
At VeinSolutions, we offer comprehensive vein treatment options including sclerotherapy and endovenous ablation. These less invasive treatment options can be an excellent choice for spider veins and less advanced cases of varicose veins. When possible, our doctors prefer to use noninvasive methods to correct the appearance and symptoms of varicose veins. For particularly large or painful varicose veins, vein surgery, known as phlebectomy, may be the best option. Phlebectomy can also be appropriate for veins that do not respond well to less extensive treatments. Our vein specialists will complete a thorough evaluation of your legs and recommend the best treatment option for your individual needs. In some cases, multiple vein treatment approaches may be necessary to address the types of vein disorders present.
What can I expect when I visit your office?
When you visit our office, you’ll complete a patient health history form and meet with one of our vein specialists. You’ll receive a physical exam to determine which vein treatments are right for you and plan a course of treatment. As part of the exam, an ultrasound device is used to help your specialist assess the condition of your veins.
What can I expect on the day of my phlebectomy procedure?
At the start of the appointment, the area around the veins to be treated will be cleaned and sterilized, and a local anesthetic will be injected near the veins to maximize comfort during the procedure. After the anesthetic has had time to take effect, small punctures are made in the skin around each vein to be treated. Through these punctures, the doctor inserts a specialized instrument to extract the targeted vein. After that, small bandages will be placed over the punctures, and your legs will be wrapped in compression stockings to help with healing. The entire procedure usually takes about 30 minutes to 1 hour.
What do I need to plan for after the procedure?
After surgery, you will be able to go home the same day. You should plan to take it easy for the first 24 hours. Some people choose to take a day off of work but in most cases this should not be necessary. After the first day, it should be safe to engage in all your regular daily activities. Strenuous exercise, heavy lifting and swimming should be avoided the first week after vein surgery. Our vein specialists encourage walking after surgery to help with circulation. Your doctor will direct you on how long to wear compression stockings following surgery.
How long does it take to see results from this type of vein treatment?
After a phlebectomy procedure, some temporary bruising or swelling can be expected in the area in which the damaged vein was removed. This should last only a few days to a week. Very soon after the procedure, your symptoms should disappear and your legs will have an improved look.
What are the risks associated with this surgery?
Though risks are minor, all varicose vein treatments carry some risk of complications. Our team will work with you after surgery to ensure your puncture areas heal properly to minimize any risk of infection and ensure minimal scarring.