Ambulatory phlebectomy micro-extraction is a procedure which allows for the removal of large surface varicosities through very small incisions that need no stitches. It is usually performed in conjunction with radio-frequency ablation or endovenous laser ablation or another anti-reflux procedure. Skin incisions or needle punctures as small as 2-3 mm are used to extract veins with a phlebectomy hook. A hook is inserted into a micro-incision in the leg. A section of the vein is hooked and then removed through the incision. With this procedure, a compression stocking is worn for 7 to 10 days. This minimizes swelling and discomfort and allows for proper healing. After the vein is removed, the leg is wrapped with an ace bandage and the patient can get up and walk around the office prior to going home. The ace bandage is removed and the patient will wear a support stocking for 7 to 10 days after surgery. Most patients are not at all uncomfortable and need no pain medication. Patients may stand and walk and return to work on the day following surgery. Strenuous activity is limited for 7 to 10 days. The results of the procedure have been excellent both from a cosmetic and patient satisfaction point of view.
How does the procedure actually work? Skin incisions or needle punctures as small a 2-3 mm are used to extract veins with a phlebectomy hook. A hook is inserted into a micro-incision in the leg. A section of the vein is hooked and then removed through the incision. With this procedure, a compression bandage is worn for 7 to 10 days. This minimizes swelling and discomfort and allows for proper healing.
What is the recovery and post-operative care like after ambulatory phlebectomy? Patients can go back to work and normal activity after 24 hours. They are asked to keep the leg elevated and stay off their feet for the first day. Also a support stocking is worn for 7 to 10 days.
What are the side effects of ambulatory phlebectomy? Compared to traditional vein stripping, this technique has virtually no scarring or side effects. Also, because it is an in-office, minimally invasive procedure performed under local anesthesia, patients have very little “down time” and virtually no problems after the procedure. Skin pigmentation at the site of the varicose vein can occur and is usually temporary.
How successful is ambulatory phlebectomy? Long term results after phlebectomy are excellent when the procedure is performed for the appropriate indications.
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