Varicose veins are a common issue among adults around the world, impacting both men and women of all ages. Although varicose veins present as only a cosmetic issue for some, the bulging and twisting that takes place in the legs where vein walls have broken down can lead to other, more severe problems when not treated properly. Varicose veins often result in pain, itching, swelling, and heaviness in the legs that can make everyday activities a challenge at best. This is why having the right treatment plan for varicose veins is an essential part of staying active and healthy.
A varicose veins specialist explains that vein disorders that cause pain and discomfort are often attributed to genetics. A family history of malfunctioning valves in the body can lead to veins that do not allow blood to flow properly throughout the legs. However, some individuals may experience varicose veins because of other health issues, such as being overweight or working in an environment where standing for extended periods of time is necessary. Whatever the reason behind varicose veins, many treatment options exist that go above and beyond at-home remedies such as compression stockings or rest.
When varicose vein surgery is necessary to treat vein disorders, it can be daunting to think about what happens before, during, and after the treatment procedure. Below is the typical care plan that varicose vein patients undergo when getting surgery for their vein issues.
Initial Consultation and Assessment
The first step of a care plan for varicose veins is the initial consultation with a vein specialist. During this appointment, a trained medical professional will evaluate the veins that are causing issues, and determine the severity of the condition. The evaluation takes place with the help of an ultrasound and is a non-invasive experience. The vein specialist then discussing possible treatment solutions for the varicose veins, potentially including injection or laser therapies to help dissolve broken veins.
Once the initial evaluation of the veins is complete, the vein specialist will also talk through anaesthesia options for surgical procedures. Patients have the option to be awake but have localisedanaesthesia for the procedure. They may also opt to be fully asleep under general anesthetic or awake but sedated. All of these options are discussed after the course of treatment is determined.
The Day of Surgery
Once a care plan is discussed and agreed upon, these details are delivered to both the patient and his or her GP. Then, a surgery date is scheduled at the convenience of the patient. On the day of the procedure, a pre-assessment by the hospital may take place to ensure those who opt for general anaesthetic are a good candidate. This step is not required for those who choose a local anaesthetic. After these brief tests, patients undergo the selected treatment surgery.
The procedure time varies depending on the severity of the varicose veins and the assessments beforehand, but in the majority of cases, patients are sent home the same day.
After the varicose vein surgery is complete, patients are given a recommended care plan for recovery. This often includes compression stockings worn throughout the day, rest and relaxation when possible, and avoiding UV rays by covering up the treated area. It is crucial for patients to follow through with these recommendations by their varicose vein specialist so that the body has the opportunity to heal correctly.
In most cases, a follow-up appointment is scheduled for two to three weeks after the initial procedure. The surgeon reviews the progress of the treated veins, and discusses any concerns or questions the patient may have after the surgery. After four weeks, compressions stockings can be thrown away, and regular activities, without the pain and discomfort varicose veins create, can be resumed.
From start to finish, getting the right varicose vein treatment takes a little over one month. The initial consultative process is fast and relatively simple for most, and the surgery that takes place as part of the care plan is a same-day procedure. Varicose veins patients may be pleasantly surprised at the quickness of the process, and the end result when varicose veins are no longer an uncomfortable issue.