Description:Swollen, painful, superficial veins,
usually in the legs, which have filled with blood. In a healthy person, valves in
the veins prevent blood flowing backwards (retrograde), so the blood does not
collect in one place. In varicose veins, the valves are either damaged or missing.
As a result, the veins fill with blood.
A common surgical technique is
known as ligation and stripping, which involves tying off, then removing the
affected vein. Vein stripping is usually done when a large vein in the leg,
called the Superficial Saphenous Vein, is thick and rope-like. A newer technique
is to seal the main leaking vein on the thigh.
Ligation and stripping...
- Two small incisions are made, approximately 2” (5 cm) in diameter. The
first cut is made near the groin, at the top of the varicose vein. The second
cut is made further down the leg, near the knee or ankle. The top of the vein
(near the groin) is tied up and sealed.
- A thin, flexible, plastic wire is passed through the bottom of the vein, and
then carefully pulled out and removed through the lower cut in the leg.
- The wire is then tied to the vein, then pulled out through the lower cut,
which pulls the vein out with it.
- The incisions will then be closed with sutures.
The blood flow in the legs will not be affected by the surgery. This is
because the veins, situated deep within the legs, will take over the role of
the damaged veins.
- Nerve damage
- Deep vein thrombosis