Tampa Vascular Surgery Frequently Asked Questions Help You Prepare For Vein Removal At The Vein and Vascular Institute
Below you can find the answers to the questions that patients most often ask about vein removal at our Tampa vein treatment center.
These questions and answers can help you know what to expect so you can be prepared for your upcoming vascular surgery at The Vein and Vascular Institute of Tampa Bay.
Varicose Vein Treatment - EVLT (Endovenous Laser Ablation) and Varithena® Treatment
The EVLT (Endovenous Laser Treatment) procedure is a minimally invasive varicose veins treatment for superficial venous reflux. A thin catheter is inserted into the vein through a small opening. The catheter delivers laser energy to the vein wall, causing it to heat, collapse, and seal shut.
Varithena® treatment is a minimally invasive varicose veins treatment for superficial venous reflux. Through a tiny puncture, a microfoam is injected directly into the diseased veins. The Varithena® microfoam fills the desired section of the vein and treats the vein wall, causing the diseased vein to collapse. Blood flow is redirected to healthier nearby veins. The microfoam disperses as it comes into contact with blood in healthy veins.
During a stripping procedure, the surgeon makes an incision in your groin and ties off the vein, after which a stripper tool is threaded through the saphenous vein and used to pull the vein out of your leg through a second incision just above your calf.
With the EVLT procedure and the Varithena® treatment, there is no need for groin surgery. Instead, during the EVLT procedure the vein remains in place and is closed using a special laser catheter inserted through a small puncture. During the Varithena® treatment the vein also remains in place and is closed using a microfoam injection that is inserted into the vein through a tiny puncture.
This may eliminate the bruising and pain often associated with vein stripping (i.e. that may result from the tearing of side branch veins while the saphenous vein is pulled out). Vein stripping is usually performed in an operating room, under general anesthesia, while the EVLT procedure is performed on an outpatient basis, typically using local or regional anesthesia.
Both procedures take approximately 45-60 minutes, though patients normally spend about 2 hours at our vein clinic due to normal pre- and post- vein treatment procedures.
Patients report feeling little, if any, pain during and after our varicose vein removal procedures. Tumescent solution is a local anesthetic that our vascular surgeons use to desensitize the treatment area. Patients can also opt to use the PRO-NOX™ system during treatment to reduce pain and anxiety.
Patients may experience some bruising or swelling immediately following varicose vein removal procedures. Long term, our patients report little to no scarring in the treatment area.
Patients are walking immediately following their varicose vein removal procedure; they typically resume normal activities within one day. Strenuous activities should be avoided for the first 2 weeks.
All varicose vein removal procedures are performed in our vascular institute using only local anesthesia allowing patients to literally walk out of their procedure, thus, avoiding the need for extended recovery and avoiding the side effects from general anesthesia. Patients can also opt to use the PRO-NOX™ system during treatment to reduce pain and anxiety.
Yes, patients can opt to use the PRO-NOX™ system during treatment to reduce pain and anxiety. The PRO-NOX™ system is a self-administered nitrous oxide and oxygen analgesia system that allows you to control how much pain and anxiety relief you receive by inhaling the gas through a tube you place in your mouth. You will feel the effects immediately, helping you to relax through your procedure. The gas mixture clears from your body within minutes, so you will be alert and able to function safely after the procedure.
Most patients report a noticeable improvement in their symptoms within 2 weeks following their vascular surgery.
The vein simply becomes fibrous tissue after treatment. Over time, the vein will gradually incorporate into surrounding tissue. One study reported that 89% of treated veins are indistinguishable from other body tissue one year after the venous closure procedure was performed.
Not too many patients like to wear medical compression stockings, but sometimes pressure dressings are all that is necessary for the treatment of varicose veins and spider veins. While wearing these stockings, some patients often report a decrease in their symptoms. However, for many people it is not practical or convenient to wear them on a regular basis, especially in Florida.
There are some oral medications and ointments that have been used to treat varicose veins and spider veins. These venotonic agents include horse chestnut extract, venostat, diosmin, hidrosmina, venosmil, rutosides, flavonoids, and assorted vitamins and minerals. However, patients have not seen significant improvement and there is very little scientific evidence to support their effectiveness.
Laser treatment for spider veins on the legs has not proven to be very effective. It is not pain free and sometimes leads to scarring. It is also more expensive. Therefore, we do not recommend it.
Yes, most of the time Sclerotherapy is effective in removing spider veins and varicose veins. However, sometimes other vein removal procedures may be required and the doctor will inform you if this is necessary in your particular case.
The solution used in Sclerotherapy Injections is a medication that has been approved by the F.D.A. which has been used successfully for many years. In our extensive experience, we have seen no significant adverse side effects.
Although most patients do not feel pain during sclerotherapy, some patients report a slight sting during sclerotherapy injections. Patients can opt to use the PRO-NOX™ system during treatment to reduce pain and anxiety. The PRO-NOX™ system is a self-administered nitrous oxide and oxygen analgesia system that allows you to control how much pain and anxiety relief you receive by inhaling the gas through a tube you place in your mouth. You will feel the effects immediately, helping you to relax through your procedure. The gas mixture clears from your body within minutes, so you will be alert and able to function safely after the procedure.
Varicose veins are a burden on your circulation. Because the blood inside them is refluxing (going backwards), correcting the flow can only improve your circulation. In treating varicose veins, we eliminate only the bad veins and safeguard the healthy veins for normal blood circulation in the legs.
It is very important to choose a Board Certified Vascular Surgeon when looking for vein treatment because vascular surgeons who are Board Certified are specially trained in the diagnosis and treatment of vascular disorders and have had more intense training in vascular surgery than any other vein doctors.
Sometimes it is necessary to treat an arterial problem, before the vein problems are treated, to prevent further complications! Unfortunately, so-called “Vein Centers” have sprung up around the country, some with untrained vascular doctors performing incorrect, unnecessary or poorly completed vein treatments.
Sadly, it has been reported that some patients have suffered skin loss, tissue damage, large ulcerations, and even limb loss from vein injections that were performed by inexperienced and unqualified technicians at cosmetic "Vein Centers".
Fortunately, the Board Certified Vascular Surgeons at The Vein & Vascular Institute of Tampa Bay are trained and able to practice all the available vascular treatment methods including laser varicose vein removal, Sclerotherapy Injections, and Phlebectomy.
All these vascular surgery procedures are minimally invasive and allow patients to return to their normal activities immediately and enjoy minimal to no scarring as well.
- Driver’s license or State ID
- Insurance information/card
- A referral if required
- Copies of operation records, medical records, x-rays, MRIs, CT scans and so on from prior doctor visits
- Medications list (if any)
- If you have had surgery elsewhere, please bring a copy of your operation report
During your initial visit, you will be given a comprehensive medical evaluation and you will be asked a series of questions.
Based on your answers and your medical condition the vascular doctor will determine if you need further diagnostic testing. Also, the doctor will discuss the best vascular treatment options for your specific medical condition.
Your medical file is handled with the utmost respect for your privacy. Our staff at The Vein & Vascular Institute of Tampa Bay are bound by strict confidentiality requirements as a condition of employment regarding your medical records. Ordinarily we will not release the contents of your medical file without your consent.
Depending on your insurance, you may be required to provide a referral when you come to our office. It is recommended that you call your primary care physician or your insurance company for this information or you can call our office and we will be able to help you with this answer.
Your insurance has determined if you have a co-payment to see a specialist. This amount will be collected at the check in window, as well as any deductible that your insurance has set for your plan.
We are a participating member of most insurance plans. Please call our office to confirm we are a provider on your plan.
Ask Your Own Question Here
If you did not find the answers you were looking for here, feel free to ask our vascular surgeons any question you may have about getting vascular surgery at The Vein & Vascular Institute of Tampa Bay.
Just fill out the form below with your question and our vascular surgeons will answer it as soon as possible.
In case you need a more immediate response, you can call our Tampa vein clinic at (813) 377-2773 because your concerns matter to us.