It is reported that up to 30% of people will be affected by varicose veins in their lifetime and although often the problem is more cosmetic, they can cause pain and suffering to many leading them to seek treatment.
There is a wide range of varicose vein treatments these days allowing patients to make a choice that suits them and their lifestyle. The traditional vein stripping method that was often used by the NHS used to be a significant surgical procedure causing patients to have long periods of downtime and pain following. The National Institute of Clinical Excellence (NICE) have suggested that stripping should no longer be used to treat varicose veins except in exceptional circumstances.
At The Private Clinic, they do not use and do not recommend using vein stripping and believe their selection of minimally invasive options far outperform the older technique and allow patients to return to their everyday activities far quicker.
That being said, a question The Private Clinic are commonly asked is, what is the best time to treat varicose veins?
Although there is no set guidelines as to when varicose veins should be treated, at The Private Clinic, they commonly find that patients do choose to get treatment during the cooler months of winter which allows them to be fully healed and vein free, ready to show off their legs in the summer months.
Varicose vein treatments at The Private Clinic
Endovenous Laser Ablation (EVLA)
The Private Clinic’s EVLA treatment is their most popular choice when it comes to varicose vein removal treatment. Recognised as being a Gold Standard treatment by the National Institute of Health and Care Excellence (NICE) the minimally invasive treatment boasts a 95.4% success rate. The treatment involves using radio frequency energy to collapse the damaged veins which are then naturally broken down by the body.
The downtime after EVLA is minimal however patients can expect to experience swelling and bruising for a few weeks following treatment and they will also need to wear stockings and bandages during the recovery period.
VenaSeal is a great option for patients who are needle phobic, as it only requires a single injection per vein. The closure system treatment involves using medical adhesive to close the varicose veins. Performed under local anaesthetic, a catheter is inserted and guided through the veins which leaves small amounts of medical grade Sapheon Glue. This substance closes the vein which is then absorbed naturally by the body.
VenaSeal often does not require patients to wear compression garments and although some bruising and swelling still may occur, many patients are able to return to work and exercise a lot sooner than other treatments.
Phlebectomy is a minimally invasive procedure performed under local anaesthetic which is effective at removing prominent varicose veins that are close to the surface of the skin. Small incisions are created and the vein is removed meaning results are often instant.
Patients will need to wear compression stockings after the treatment, and swelling and bruising is to be expected, but no stitches are required.
Sclerotherapy is more commonly used for smaller thread and spider veins, but it can also be used for smaller varicose veins. A foam solution is instead used which is then injected into the veins causing the walls to collapse. The vein will then be gradually absorbed by the body.
Bruising and swelling will be visible following Sclerotherapy treatment and patients will be required to wear compression garments.
Downtime is often the biggest factor when it comes to choosing when to have your varicose veins treated. Although none of the treatments at The Private Clinic will involve patients being off their feet, it is advised that you allow yourself to go through a period of recovery where exercise and spending long periods standing are ideally avoided. Swelling and bruising is also to be expected following treatment, as well as the requirements to wear a compression garments which may make wearing certain types of clothes difficult.
Overall, many patients are able to return to work the following day, but exercise and strenuous activity should be avoided for a week.
Patients should also avoid travelling for at least 3 weeks after a varicose vein removal procedure. Following treatment, patients are at risk of developing deep vein thrombosis (DVT) and travelling on long haul flights and being sat still for long periods of time can increase the risk further.
The Private Clinic advise that patients let their surgeons know of any future plans, so that their treatment can be performed allowing enough time for recovery.
At The Private Clinic, they have a range of treatment options to suit all patients and their lifestyles. The best option is to go and talk to one of their experienced vascular surgeons who will be able to go through the procedures in detail and create a personalised treatment plan to suit you.
Vascular surgeons at The Private Clinic
Mr Constantinos Kyriakides, MD, FRCS (Gen). GMC 3275436
Mr Dynesh Rittoo, MBChB, FRCS (Eng), FRCS (Gen Surg). GMC 3556456
Mr Charles Ranaboldo, BM, FRCS, MS. GMC Number: 2939195
Professor Rajiv Kumar Vohra, MBBS. GMC Number: 3158700
Mr Tahir Hussain, MBBS, MS, FRCS. GMC Number: 3242669
Mr Rajiv Pathak, MBBS, MS, FRCS, FRCS (Gen). GMC Number: 4585309
Mr Ferdinand Serracino-Inglott, MD, FRCSI, FRCS(Gen), DIC MSc. GMC Number: 5206200
Miss Rossella Locci, MD. GMC Number: 7025036
To find out more about varicose vein treatment at The Private Clinic, visit their website or give them a call on 03339209135 to book a consultation.