There are a number of causes and treatment options for varicose veins. Dr. Scott Baker of the Vein Clinic of North Carolina offers a minimally invasive treatment for people suffering from superficial venous reflux, the condition that causes pain, swelling and unsightliness of varicose veins. Superficial venous reflux develops when the valves that usually keep blood flowing out of the legs become damaged or diseased. This causes blood to pool in the legs. Common symptoms of superficial venous reflux include pain, swelling, leg heaviness and fatigue, as well as varicose veins.
Since valves can’t be repaired, the only alternative is to re-route blood flow through healthy veins. Traditionally, this has been done by surgically removing (stripping) the troublesome vein from the leg. The Vein Clinic of North Carolina utilizes a minimally invasive, in-office technique called “ClosureFast™.” The ClosureFast™ procedure involves threading a thin catheter into the vein through a small opening. The catheter delivers radiofrequency (RF) energy to the vein wall, causing it to heat, collapse and seal shut.
The procedure is performed under local anesthesia, and patients will be ready to resume their regular activities immediately after the procedure. In fact, it is a requirement that patients walk approximately 30-60 min on the same day after the procedure. There may be some minimal bruising and swelling after the procedure, but most patients report very little pain. Noticeable improvement in symptoms is seen after 1-2 weeks. For a few weeks following the treatment, a regular walking regimen may be recommended, as well as refraining from very strenuous activities (heavy lifting, for example) or prolonged periods of standing.
The Closure procedure provides a less invasive alternative to vein stripping by simply closing the problem vein instead of surgical intervention. Once the diseased vein is closed, other healthy veins take over and empty blood from your legs. The most important step in determining whether or not the Closure procedure is appropriate for you is a complete ultrasound examination by your physician or qualified clinician. The Closure procedure has been used to treat patients across a wide range of ages and medical conditions, but a thorough evaluation is necessary, along with additional interventional techniques such as compression stockings.
As with any medical intervention, potential risks and complications exist with the Closure procedure. All patients should consult their doctors to determine if their conditions present any special risks. Your physician will review potential complications of the Closure procedure during a consultation. For more information, please contact the Vein Clinic of North Carolina to schedule a consultation or visit our website, www.veinclinicnc.com.
Dr. Baker is certified by the American Board of Venous and Lymphatic Medicine. He is also a member of The American College of Phlebology. He is focused on the treatment of venous problems and aesthetic medicine and has continued to serve the greater Triad region for over 30 years.