Explanation of SurgerySurgical treatment for varicose veins is designed to ligate points of venous valve failure and extract or obliterate the varicose veins in the limb(s). The techniques are known as "ligation, puncture and extraction".
Surgical removal of the surface thigh vein or calf vein, when done, is performed by invaginating the vein. This technique allows for reduced trauma and a faster recovery than the old technique of "stripping".
Preoperative ultrasound (duplex scan) is used to identify all points of valve failure so as few as possible valve leaks are missed at surgery.
When you have an operation you can expect an incision, approximately 1 - 3 cm long, over the site of leaking valves. These are generally at each groin and less frequently behind the knee. Incisions over the veins themselves will be approximately ½ - 1 mm in length and will be closed by single suture or adhesive tape. Most extraction sites are small punctures (less than 1 mm) and will not require any suture or closure at all. Firm compression bandages are applied at completion of surgery. Only minimal blood loss occurs with this surgery so transfusion is not considered a possibility. If additional valves require ligation an incision over these sites is about 3mm in length.