Advanced Venous Procedures
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 VNUS closure.
The VNUS closure procedure is a minimally invasive venous ablation (vein removal surgery) procedure to treat varicose veins. This procedure uses radio waves 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.
This is an outpatient procedure and you will not need to stay in the hospital overnight. The complete procedure 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 an incision in the vein, through which a catheter is inserted. The catheter is then moved to the varicose vein which needs to be treated. Radio waves 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.
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 or 2 days. The treated vein slowly disappears with time.
Like all surgical procedures, VNUS closure may also be associated with certain complications including
- 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)
The VNUS 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 good, with patients experiencing significant improvement in their symptoms in one or two weeks.