How is radiofrequency ablation used to treat varicose veins?

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Radiofrequency ablation is a type of treatment for varicose veins. In this procedure, a catheter is inserted into the vein, and radiofrequency waves are transmitted through the vein to cause damage to the vein wall. This causes the vein to collapse and prevents blood flow through the vein.
Billy J. Kim, MD
Vascular Surgery
Varicose veins are enlarged cord-like veins that produce a feeling of heaviness and fatigue in the legs. For some people, varicose veins also pose a cosmetic challenge.

One new technique for treating varicose veins is radiofrequency ablation (RFA), or burning the vein from the inside and shutting the vein out. This is an outpatient treatment: the doctor will give you some medication to help you remain calm during the procedure, give you local anesthesia, and perform the procedure through a small needle hole in your vein. The entire procedure takes about 15 minutes.

Continue Learning about Spider Veins and Varicose Veins

Spider Veins and Varicose Veins

Large twisted blue or purplish veins visible at the skins surface are known as varicose veins. Any vein in your body can become varicose but it usually occurs in the legs and feet due to the pressure the lower body endures to keep ...

your body upright. It is caused by the weakening of the valves and veins in your legs. Varicose veins are usually hereditary. We are also more prone to get varicose veins as we age. Symptoms include itching, burning, throbbing or cramping in the legs and around the veins. Self-care measures such as exercising, elevating your legs, and wearing compression stockings are used to ease the pain and prevent varicose veins from getting worse. If these measures dont work, see your doctor to discuss medical treatments that are available to close or remove varicose veins.
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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.