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Vein Stripping or Phlebectomy for Varicose Veins

Vein stripping or phlebectomy for varicose veins is a procedure used to remove varicose veins from the legs. Varicose veins can be painful and can make the legs appear unsightly and jagged. This procedure can correct those conditions. Additional issues that can be corrected by this procedure include ulcer of the leg, a leg sore that the patient does not want to reappear, reoccurring leg blood clots as well as veins that have eroded through the skin.

To prepare for the procedure, your vascular surgeon may ask you to stop taking certain medications, refrain from drinking alcohol, abstain from food for six to eight hours prior to the procedure and stop taking blood thinners.

How the Procedure is Performed

Two or three small incisions will be made at the damaged part of the vein along the bottom, midpoint and top of the affected vein. A catheter will be passed through the groin, into the vein and down into the lower incision. The vein is removed using a wire that cuts off the damaged vein and then passes it through the incision. Any other damaged veins on the skin's surface can also be removed using this same procedure. 

What to Expect After the Procedure

Patients will be able to start walking within two to three hours post procedure. However, a return to normal activity may take as long as 15 days. Your WakeMed vascular surgeon is uniquely acquainted with your specific procedure and will be able to evaluate your condition to determine when you can return to a normal activity level.

Removal of the damaged veins should come with some immediate relief. You should cease to experience pain in the legs which can improve sleep and mobility. You should also enjoy a more smooth appearance to the legs.