Ambulatory microphlebectomy is a procedure for treating surface varicose veins. Microphlebectomy involves actually removing the diseased vein through a series of tiny incisions. Oftentimes, microphlebectomy is performed after a patient has received radiofrequency ablation to treat the larger feeder veins of the leg (Great Saphenous and Small Saphenous Veins). Among these patients, there may be persistent varicose veins that did not resolve after the ablation procedure. Ambulatory microphlebectomy is performed at Oceana Vein Specialists in our office using local anesthesia.
How is the procedure performed?
Before the procedure, the bulging surface varicose veins to be treated will be outlined with a skin marker. Next, the region surrounding these varicose veins will be injected with a local anesthetic (lidocaine solution) in order to numb the region. A few tiny 1mm incisions will be made along the course of the vein and special tiny instruments used to remove the vein. After the vein is removed the skin will be cleaned and a small bandage applied.
What can I expect after the procedure?
Many patients that have had microphlebectomy experience immediate relief from symptoms following their procedure. Since this technique actually removes the symptomatic surface varicose vein there is reduced incidence of recurrence over time. You may return to work and normal light activity the next day and there are no stitches involved. Immediately after the procedure you may experience slight bruising or swelling which typically resolves over days to weeks.
How is ambulatory microphlebectomy different than ‘vein stripping’?
Vein stripping is not the same as microphlebectomy. Microphlebectomy is used to remove surface varicose veins while ‘vein stripping’ was used to remove the larger feeding veins of the leg (Great Saphenous and Small Saphenous Veins). Vein stripping is mostly a procedure of the past and has been replaced by minimally invasive endovenous thermal ablation techniques (such as Radiofrequency ablation). Vein stripping is performed in the hospital under general anesthesia and often has prolonged healing times.