Watch a movie, take a long walk, go grocery shopping, eat at a fancy restaurant… these are all pretty ordinary things that we do on any given day that take about two hours. You know what else takes about two hours? Varicose vein treatment – really. Many of our patients are surprised to learn that we can treat varicose veins in two hours or less right here in our office. The fastest treatment only takes 45 minutes. More advanced problems may require up to two hours or different types of treatment. Typically, patients require more than one treatment to remove all of their varicose veins, but the individual treatment sessions only take a couple of hours or less. Dr. Barbieri will evaluate your veins and create a customized treatment plan. Here are the different kinds of treatments for varicose veins.
3 Main Treatments for Varicose Veins
The actual treatment time for varicose veins is two hours or less. There are three main treatment options and we describe them below. When you come in for your evaluation, Dr. Barbieri will tell you which one is best for your varicose vein condition.
Endovenous Ablation (1-2 Hours)
There are two basic types of Endovenous Ablation treatments, but both take an hour to two to perform:
Radio Frequency Ablation
This procedure involves heating the vein wall using temperature-controlled radio-frequency energy to shrink and seal the problem vein. Once the vein has been closed, blood is naturally rerouted to healthy veins. The closed vein is treated as waste by the body and is absorbed over time. That’s it. Heat the vein, it shrivels and the body takes care of the rest.
Laser Vein Ablation
Laser vein ablation is very similar to radio frequency ablation. The difference is that instead of radio frequency, we use a beam of light. With laser vein ablation, a device sends a thin beam of radiation in the form of light to close and shrink the varicose vein. Just like with radio frequency ablation, once the vein is closed, blood is naturally rerouted to nearby healthy veins and the bad vein is absorbed by the body.
Microphlebectomy (1-2 Hours)
Microphlebectomy is another simple treatment option that typically takes 1-2 hours. This minimally invasive treatment does not require sutures or general anesthesia and is performed in our office with minimal downtime. After we numb the skin topically, very small punctures are made and the vein is removed. No stitches are necessary. Minimal downtime is required and patients can expect to resume normal activity immediately following.
Sclerotherapy (45 Minutes)
Sclerotherapy is the fastest of all the treatments. It usually only takes about 45 minutes.
Sclerotherapy is a non-surgical procedure which involves the injection of a concentrated solution through a tiny needle. The solution causes the vein to shrink and it is ultimately absorbed by the body as waste. This treatment is used on varicose veins when an ablation cannot be utilized. Sometimes we use ultrasound guidance to help locate the diseased veins under the surface of the skin to ensure accurate injection.
All three of these treatments are simple, outpatient procedures done by Dr. Barbieri in our office. They require minimum downtime and start to work immediately following the procedures. Depending on the amount of varicose veins, more than one session may be required. You may be required to come back for follow ups or further procedures depending on your customized plan.
Dr. Barbieri likes to do follow ups every 1-2 years to check on you in the future as venous disease is genetic and progressive and most likely will need intermittent surveillance. Once varicose veins are gone they don’t return, however, you can develop new varicose veins over time that may require further treatment.
If you’ve been suffering with the itching, burning, and aching of varicose veins, make an appointment for an evaluation. Here is a quick start guide so you’ll know what to expect from start to finish. Treatments only take two hours, and once the veins are gone, they are gone for good. They will never grow back. (Other veins could eventually become problematic in the future, but treated veins do not come back.)
Varicose Vein Treatment Is as Easy as 3, 2, 1
Three treatment options…two hours…one happy patient. We see it every day here at the Vein Clinic of Greater Kansas City. It’s one of the things that makes our jobs so rewarding. Make an appointment for an evaluation with Dr. Barbieri today. If you’d like to learn more about the treatment options, download our guide below. Or just give us a call, ask any questions you may have and get all the answers you need to schedule an appointment and get rid of those painful veins.