Varicose veins are large, dilated, twisted veins caused by defective valves and the weakening of the venous walls. Often, these veins present as blue or purple and swollen. Over 30 percent of men and women suffer from this common medical condition, some of whom experience mild and moderate pain, skin ulcers and blood clots.
When patients experience moderate levels of pain,vein inflammation, blood pooling or a blood clot, vascular surgery may be necessary to treat the varicose veins. In addition to the aforementioned issues, surgery is sometimes recommended for patients who need to prevent their medical issue from progressing into more serious conditions such as a pulmonary embolism or deep vein thrombosis.
Bypass surgery is a vascular surgery that uses a graft to reroute the flow of blood around a blocked blood vessel. To start, the surgeon creates a small opening below the blocked artery. This opening allows the surgeon to place a graft and connect it below and above the blockage. Vascular grafts can either be synthetic tubes or portions of human veins.
Ligation and Stripping
Usually performed in conjunction with one another, ligation and stripping involve the removal of varicose veins in an outpatient or hospital setting. During the procedure, the surgeon cuts and ties the affected veins. Stripping requires the surgeon to make two small incisions in order to remove large veins. After surgery, bruising may occur and remain for several weeks; however, the recovery period typically lasts from 2-10 days.
SEPS, or subfascial endoscopic perforator surgery, is less invasive than ligation and stripping, and it has a low wound complication rate. After making small incisions, the surgeon inserts a balloon, which separates the veins from the surrounding tissues. This separation allows the surgeon to dissect the affected veins, promoting the healing of chronic venous ulcers in perforating veins.
Venous Valve Repair
In order to improve the function of venous valves, the surgeon shortens the valves by making a small incision and folding the valves’ flaps. A fabric sleeve may be used to support the venous walls, and in some cases, valve-transposition is performed. Valve-transposition involves removing a vein segment that contains a functional valve from one part of the patient’s body and using said valve to replace the vein segment that does not have a functional valve.