Treatment of Varicose Veins of the Leg

This procedure involves the removal or destruction varicose veins that are just under the skin. There are different methods to remove veins, such as: Varicose VeinsCopyright © Nucleus Medical Media, Inc.

  • Call Your Doctor

    After arriving home, contact your doctor if any of the following occurs:

    • Signs of infection, including fever and chills
    • Redness, swelling, increasing pain, excessive bleeding, or any discharge from the incision site
    • Pain that you cannot control with the medications you have been given
    • Pain, burning, urgency or frequency of urination, or persistent bleeding in the urine
    • Cough, shortness of breath, or chest pain
    • Leg swelling

    If you think you have an emergency, call for medical help right away.

  • Definition


    This procedure involves the removal or destruction
    varicose veins
    that are just under the skin.

    There are different methods to remove veins, such as:

    • Sclerotherapy—injects the varicose veins with a chemical to shrink the veins
    • Radiofrequency ablation—collapses and seals varicose veins using radiofrequency energy
    • Vein stripping
    • A surgical procedure called phlebectomy

    Varicose Veins
    Nucleus images
    Copyright © Nucleus Medical Media, Inc.

  • What to Expect

  • Reasons for Procedure

    Veins have one-way valves to channel blood back to the heart. Varicose veins develop when the valves of the veins become damaged. This causes blood to pool in the veins, enlarging them and often making the veins just beneath the skin visible. The skin can also turn dark purple or brown because of increased pressure.

    Treatment may be done for cosmetic and health reasons. In some cases, the areas of discolored skin may break down and form open sores, called stasis ulcers. Clots can also form in the pooled blood. When the valves are functioning poorly, your leg may burn, ache, or throb.

    Treatment for this condition can involve either destroying or removing the damaged veins.

  • Possible Complications

    Problems from the procedure are rare, but all procedures have some risk. Your doctor will review potential problems, like:

    • Recurrence of varicose veins
    • Bleeding
    • Infection
    • Skin discoloration at the surgical site

    • A
      blood clot, known as
      deep vein thrombosis

    Factors that may increase the risk of complications include:

    • Smoking