Richard Evans - Wellington Vascular Surgeon
These are bulging veins that lie just beneath the skin (superficial veins). They occur when the walls of a vein are weak or damaged or if the valves in the vein that normally stop the blood from flowing backwards are impaired, resulting in pooling of the blood and stretched veins. Besides being unattractive, varicose veins can be painful and cause inflammation or ulceration.
The following different types of surgery are available if varicose veins require treatment:
Sclerotherapy – a tiny needle is used to inject a chemical solution into the vein that causes the vein to collapse. This approach is recommended for small varicose veins or spider veins that typically appear on the upper legs. You will need to wear elastic bandages or compression stockings over the treated area for some time after surgery.
Varicose veins may be treated with using laser therapy. Surgery is rarely required these days. Laser treatment is done as a day case, under local anaesthetic. Most patients can return to work after several days. Laser treatment is often accompanied by sclerotherapy – see above.
Richard Evans also treats varicose veins using VenaSeal™ adhesive sealing. Tiny, controlled amounts of medical-grade glue are injected into the vein via a thin tube, using a special dispenser gun. All the while progress is monitored onscreen using ultrasound. Once the adhesive is in place along the vein, light pressure is applied to the leg to seal it. Adhesive sealing is often accompanied by sclerotherapy – see above.
Typical treatment time is about 30-60 min. Patients need to wear compression stockings for about 10 days afterwards.