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Ambulatory Phlebectomy for Large Varicose Veins

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Ambulatory Phlembectomy

  1. What is ambulatory phlebectomy?
  2. Who started this and when?
  3. What are A.P.’s advantages over standard stripping?
  4. How long does the procedure take?
  5. Will all of the varicose veins be removed at once?
  6. Are bandages used to wrap the legs?
  7. Will I be able to drive myself home?
  8. Is it possible to shower after the procedure?
  9. Will there be stitches?
  10. Will bruising occur?
  11. Is there pain after the procedure?
  12. What is the total recovery time?
  13. What is the patient satisfaction rate?
  14. Could veins be removed during A.P. that I may later need if heart surgery is required in the future?
  15. Will my insurance company pay for this procedure?

What is ambulatory phlebectomy?
Ambulatory phlebectomy (A.P.) is an in-office surgical procedure that removes the larger varicose veins of the legs, using local anesthesia, using minute (1-2 mm or 1/16 of an inch) incisions.

Who started this and when?
Robert Muller M.D. was a Swiss Dermatologist who began doing A.P. in the mid-fifties in Neuchatel Switzerland. It is now standard practice in most of the world to remove varicose veins by this procedure.

What are A.P.’s advantages over standard stripping?
The scars of standard strippings are eliminated. These are replaced by 1-2 millimeter virtually invisible incisions. There is no hospitalization required, no general anesthesia, greatly decreased morbidity, no down time and work can be resumed the following day.

How long does the procedure take?
The A.P. procedure can take anywhere from one to three hours depending on the severity. Usually the procedure takes approximately 1 1/2 hours.

Will all of the varicose veins be removed at once?
This depends on the extent and severity of each patient’s condition. Typically, this type of outpatient surgery is done in stages.

Are bandages used to wrap the legs?
Yes, bandages and compression stockings are used.

Will I be able to drive myself home?
Yes.

Is it possible to shower after the procedure?
The only exception to showering with a shower bag is if the varicose veins go up into the groin region.

Will there be stitches?
No stitches. The incisions are so small, steristrips will be used.

Will bruising occur?
Any bruising that occurs is usually very slight.

Is there pain after the procedure?
Less than 2% of our patients tell us they took anything for pain, and was usually only Tylenol or Ibuprofen.

What is the total recovery time?
By two weeks after the procedure the stockings are eliminated and the steristrips removed.

What is the patient satisfaction rate?
95% to 98% of all patients are extremely happy they chose A.P. over standard stripping. When standard stripping patients see A.P. results, most wish they had chosen A.P. instead of stripping.

Could veins be removed during A.P. that I may later need if heart surgery is required in the future?
The vein we are removing is a diseased vein which is already dilated and of no use in heart surgery. It cannot be put back into such a vital organ as the heart and be expected to function normally.

Will my insurance company pay for this procedure?
This will depend on the quality of your insurance program. However, with rare exceptions, this is a covered medical procedure.

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