Phlebectomy (Vein Surgery)
Micro-incision phlebectomy (vein surgery) is a minimally invasive outpatient procedure that removes superficial veins through tiny, slit-like incisions in the skin. Micro-incision phlebectomy can effectively remove large, bulging (raised) varicose veins with virtually no scarring and minimal post-treatment discomfort
Before and After Phlebectomy
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What is Required Prior to Undergoing Vein Surgery?
Prior to the procedure, each patient should undergo a thorough evaluation of their veins which may include an ultrasound examination. This is necessary to determine:
- If the varicose veins are connected to other larger veins, which may need to be treated first
- If there are clots in deep or superficial veins, which may need to be addressed
- If other additional procedures used in conjunction with micro-incision phlebectomy will be required
How is Micro-Incision Phlebectomy Performed?
Before the procedure, the patient’s leg is marked to identify the veins that need removal. Next, a local anesthetic fluid is injected into the areas surrounding the vein. Since vein surgery is typically performed under local anesthesia, patients do not feel any pain during the procedure. The physician will than make tiny incisions the size of a ballpoint pen tip (about 2-3 mm) and use a vein hook to fully extract the vein.
How does Phlebectomy compare to other varicose vein treatment options?
Less-invasive procedures such as sclerotherapy, the injection of a liquid or foam medication directly into a vein to eliminate it, can instead be performed to treat bulging varicose veins. However, multiple sessions over several months are often needed for successful treatment. Bulging varicose veins may also become hard and tender to touch for weeks to months following sclerotherapy. The fact that veins are completely removed in a single session is a significant advantage of vein surgery.
How long does Micro-Incision Phlebectomy procedure take?
Depending on the number and severity of varicose veins in a particular patient, the micro-incision phlebectomy procedure may take between 30 and 90 minutes.
What can I expect after undergoing Vein Surgery?
Minor bruising and swelling post procedure is normal and will subside after a few days. Additionally patients may notice bumps or lumps in the areas under the incisions, as well as experience burning, intermittent discomfort, numbness, or tingling in the incision area. These issues will typically resolve themselves after a couple of weeks.
Patients are encouraged to walk immediately following surgery and carry on normal daily activities. For a minimum of 1 week following the procedure, patients will wear compression stockings daily. Vigorous exercise and heavy lifting should be avoided for at least 3 days following the procedure.
The incisions heal completely without the need for sutures, and after 6 to 12 months, they are practically undetectable.
Who are ideal patients for Micro-Incision Phlebectomy?
Prime candidates for micro-incision phlebotomy are individuals who are able to walk unassisted, able to wear compression stockings (do not have arterial circulation problems), and are not allergic to local anesthetics. Additionally, any active infection, rash, or other significant skin conditions must be resolved prior to the procedure.