What is Superficial Venous Reflux And How is it Treated?

varicose veins blood pressureAbout 80 million Americans are suffering from some kind of a venous disease including superficial venous reflux is one of them. This disease stops the blood from flowing in the right direction and results in severe pain, fatigue and swelling in the legs. Treating it as soon as you diagnose it is important so that it doesn’t get worse in the future.

Here’s everything you need to know about superficial venous reflux:

What Is Superficial Venous Reflux?

Superficial venous reflux goes by with another name, venous insufficiency. That’s because this venous disease occurs due to a lack of blood flow in the veins.

In this disease, the valves in the legs become damaged and fail to let the blood flow back to the heart. The trapped blood is then pooled inside the veins, exerting a lot of pressure on the blood vessel and causing it to ache and swell. A lot of people mistake superficial venous reflux as varicose veins because both the diseases look quite similar but they really aren’t. You can find more information on varicose veins treatment here, but superficial venous reflux is a different ball game.

In case of varicose veins, the blood flows in reverse but not in case of superficial venous reflux. In this situation, the blood fails to reach to the heart and stays in the vein.

How Is Superficial Venous Reflux Treated?

There are two ways in which superficial venous reflux can be treated. The Closure Procedure and The Stripping Procedure. Let’s learn about them both.

  • The Closure Procedure:

This method is less painful than the other one and doesn’t need any anesthetic. It involves making a small cut and passing a thin catheter into the leg which is affected. The job of this catheter is to provide heat to the walls of the veins causing them to collapse due to warmth and get sealed. This method is less complex than the stripping method because it involves closing only the vein that is damaged. Once the vein is shut off, other veins take over and begin to transport blood to the heart.

  • The Stripping Method:

It is a major surgery that involves a lot of pain, which is why anesthesia is also used. The doctor makes a cut in the groin area and ties the damaged vein with a stripper tool. Once tied, the surgeon makes another cut slightly above the calf and uses the tied stripper tool to pull out the affected vein from the leg.

Which One Is Better?

This question can be better answered by a professional doctor only because different patients have different conditions. While the closure method seems much safer it may not be for everyone and the only option left for them is the stripping method. Moreover, the right method also depends on the persons overall health.

The Verdict

It is vital to get your venous disease diagnosed if you have any doubts and opt for a treatment as soon as you can.