Why We Don’t Do Vein Stripping: Alternative Methods For Treating Varicose Veins

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Tuesday, 3 March 2015

At Vein Specialists of the South, we offer minimally invasive varicose vein procedures in a comfortable office setting, under a gentle, local anesthesia, with a walk-in and walk-out with little or no down time approach. With this philosophy in mind, most of our patients are back to normal activities within a day or two.

Endovenous Closure – Alternative To Vein Stripping

The traditional treatment for venous reflux in the great or small saphenous vein was vein strippingHowever, in 1999, there was a revolutionary advancement in the treatment of vein disease, when a minimally invasive procedure called endovenous closure was offered to American patients. We were fortunate to be the first practice in Middle Georgia to perform an endovenous procedure in early 2000. Since that time, over 5000 of our patients have benefitted from this new, minimally invasive procedure. The difference with endovenous closure vs. vein stripping is that we are able to treat the vein in place without stripping it or removing it. This approach results in a quicker procedure and faster recovery time with less pain and discomfort.

What About Big Bulgy Veins?

Once we’ve treated venous reflux in great saphenous or small saphenous vein with the endovenous procedure, we still need to treat those big, ugly, symptomatic bulging varicose veins. Our philosophy is to treat those at the same time we treat your underlying reflux, reducing the number of treatments and procedures you’ll need. Dr. Harper has found that the best approach is a minimally invasive procedure called microphlebectomy or ambulatory phlebectomy, which allows us to use microscopic incisions to tease those big bulgy veins away. It’s like patching the hole in the roof and painting the stain on the ceiling on the same day: One and Done!

What About Spider Veins?

What do we do about those pesky spider veins? Spider veins are those little broken veins in your legs that you really hate to see. They don’t cause any real medical problems, but depending on the severity of the spider veins, they can be rather unsightly. Many people choose to get rid of these for cosmetic reasons, which require a different approach altogether. If we’ve been treating your big veins, this is kind of like icing on the cake with a cherry on top. The main method of treatment for those spider veins is sclerotherapy, which is a minimally invasive micro-injection solution to shrink those veins away. It usually takes two or three treatments (up to four if the veins are really bad) spaced out over six or eight weeks. After we’ve successfully treated your spider veins, which will fade 70-80%, leg maintenance will be prescribed in the form of compression hose and exercise. Some patients will be required to come in for touch-up treatments every year to 18-months as well.

Over 18,000 Procedures Performed

Dr. Kenneth Harper, founder of Vein Specialists of the South, has evaluated more than 22,000 patients and performed over 18,000 procedures since 2000. Dr. Harper is a leader in comprehensive vein care, having focused on diagnosis and treatments for varicose veins, spider veins, venous ulcers, and leg swelling since 1997.


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