Compare Treatments

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Our Minimally Invasive Approach

Minimally invasive techniques are designed to cause the least possible upset to the body, i.e. small or non-incisions, no need for general anaesthesia, quick recovery, little pain and few complications.

All of our treatments are minimally invasive and guided by accurate medical imaging such as colour duplex ultrasound.

We manage your vein problems by first treating their underlying root cause(s). We identify and destroy any veins that contain faulty valves, before then treating the visible varicosities. By destroying the root cause, we relieve the symptoms, reduce the visible varicosities and prevent the treated veins from returning.

The National Institute of Health and Care Excellence (NICE) recommends that all patients should undergo minimally invasive treatment and not surgery. Despite this, many patients are still told by surgeons that surgery is the only answer. It should never be necessary. We have been treating patients without surgery for almost two decades. There is no need for general anaesthesia.

Compare Vein Treatment Options for Varicose Veins vs. Thread Veins

  Varicose Veins Thread Veins
Ultrasound Scan Results Faulty valves identified in feeder veins in most patients Faulty valves identified in feeder veins in a minority of patients
Most common Veincentre procedures undertaken Endovenous Laser Ablation (followed by Foam Sclerotherapy and/or Avulsions/ Phlebectomies) Foam Sclerotherapy Microsclerotherapy
Type Minimally Invasive Minimally Invasive
Procedure Aim To destroy the underlying cause of vein problems (large veins close to the skin containing faulty valves (reflux)) and then the varicose veins themselves. To destroy any feeder veins and then the thread veins themselves.
Number of Appointments Required Over 99% of our patients have EVLA performed on one or both legs in just one visit.

90% require just one follow up visit.

Thread veins, especially if widespread, can take much longer to resolve than large varicose veins.
Procedure Time Approximately 1 -2 hours depending on how many veins require EVLA Normally less than 30 minutes.
Anaesthesia Performed under local anaesthetic. No anaesthesia required.
Outpatient Walk-in, Walk-out Walk-in, Walk-out
Post-Procedure Care Class II Compression stockings must be worn for 1 week. Class II Compression stockings must be worn for 1 week.
Recovery The vast majority of patients suffer little or no pain following the procedure and can go straight back to normal activities.

If pain experienced this usually occurs 5-7 days post-procedure when the treated veins start to contract. A small minority of patients get significant pain which can stop them from working for a few days.

See our Risks page for more info.

Patients usually resume normal activities immediately.
Follow-up Usually 6-8 weeks post-procedure. A repeat scan is undertaken to ensure EVLA has effectively closed off any faulty valves.

Most patients require more treatment e.g. foam sclerotherapy or avulsions/ phlebectomies.

Patient to book in for reassessment or further sessions of injections if they’d like further veins treating.

If patients happy with results following one session, then usually no routine follow-up is necessary. If extensive thread veins, then multiple visits may be necessary.

Covered by Insurance Almost always (can be dependent on your policy) Sometimes (can be dependent on your symptoms and policy)

Additional Notes

Your treatment journey will always start with a consultation and duplex ultrasound scan to determine whether there is an underlying cause for your vein problems.

The specific treatment that we recommend will differ depending on the results of the scan, but if you have definite varicose veins, the most likely required treatment will be EVLA, followed by foam sclerotherapy and/or avulsions (AKA phlebectomies). If you only have thread veins or very small varicose veins, you may only require foam sclerotherapy or microsclerotherapy injections. We also offer embolisation treatment for those relative few whose varicose veins originate in the pelvis.

Surgery vs. Minimally Invasive Treatments

Is Surgery Required?

Treatment of veins using the traditional method of surgery – vein stripping – is no longer a recommended treatment option. We have never had to resort to surgery.

The main difference in technique between our minimally invasive treatments and surgery is as follows:

In a surgical procedure, the main superficial vein (great saphenous) is stripped out and removed altogether – whereas, in our methods, the vein is destroyed ‘in-situ’ (where it lies).

The outcome is the same, but the destruction of a vein can be achieved much more easily than its removal – with far fewer complications, no need for time off work and no general anaesthesia.

More importantly, the recurrence rate after surgery, and the need for repeat operations, is reported to be as high as 70%. On the flip side, our audits show that only 1.16% of patients require repeat EVLA treatment.

We do not offer surgery at Veincentre clinics.

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