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Varicose vein surgery


About varicose vein surgery 

Varicose vein surgery is an operation to remove varicose veins. Varicose veins are swollen, bulging enlarged veins that look blue or dark purple. They mainly affect your legs but you can get them in other parts of your body too.

You might want to have varicose vein surgery for cosmetic reasons, or to relieve the symptoms of varicose veins. These can include aching and a feeling of heaviness in your legs. You may have some swelling too.

After varicose veins are removed, other veins, deep in your legs, will take over their role.

How can I prepare for my varicose vein surgery?

Your hospital will ask you not to eat or drink anything for a set time before your procedure. Your surgeon will explain how to prepare and what will happen when you have varicose vein removal. He or she may mark your veins with a pen before the operation.

You should arrange to have someone take you home after varicose vein treatment.

What happens during my varicose vein surgery?

Before the procedure, your surgeon will talk you through the process and ask you to sign a consent form.

When you have varicose vein surgery, you will be seen as a day case. However, if you are having surgery on both legs you may need to stay in hospital overnight. Varicose vein surgery is usually performed under general anaesthesia. This means you will be asleep during the procedure.

Your surgeon will make a cut in your groin and behind your knee to access your varicose veins. He or she will tie off the varicose vein at the top of your leg to stop blood flowing through it. Your surgeon will then insert a thin wire to pull out your varicose vein through the cut in your knee. 

Are there any complications or risks of my varicose vein surgery? 

As with every procedure, there are complications associated with varicose vein surgery. Speak to your surgeon for more information.

Complications of varicose vein surgery include bleeding and infection. The procedure may damage nerves in your skin. Anther potential complication of varicose vein surgery is deep vein thrombosis if deeper veins in your leg are damaged. This is when you get a blood clot.

Most people have a successful operation. However, it's possible that you can get more varicose veins and need another operation.

Recovering from varicose vein surgery

You may need to wear compression stockings for up to a week to help with blood flow in your legs.

You may have some pain after your varicose veins treatment for around two weeks. You might have some bruising too, which can last up to a month.

It usually takes about one to three weeks to recover from varicose vein surgery and return to work. You can drive after two days.

How much does varicose vein surgery cost?

For a guide to what you could pay for your treatment, click here.

What to do now

Once you have decided that you would like to be treated at an HCA hospital, or would like further information, here's what to do next:

  1. Call one of our advisors on + 44 (0) 20 7079 4399 or complete our web enquiry form.
  2. Check with your insurance company that your policy covers your treatment, and obtain authorisation.
  3. Visit or call your GP to obtain a referral letter and then call us to make an appointment to visit your chosen consultant and hospital at a time to suit you.
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