Your anaesthetist will insert an intravenous cannula into a vein. If you’re having regional anaesthesia, your anaesthetist will inject the anaesthetic into your back to numb you from the waist down. You’ll then be positioned on the operating table.
Your surgeon makes a small 2 to 3 cm incision in your groin to access the point where your femoral vein joins the varicose vein. They then tie off the varicose vein. Next, your surgeon threads a thin wire right down your vein and brings it to the surface with another small incision. After attaching a device to the end of the wire, your surgeon then pulls the wire back into the vein.
The device catches hold of the vein and as the surgeon pulls on the wire, the vein is stripped away, pulled back up your leg and taken out through the incision in your groin. Sometimes the vein is pulled downwards instead.
Any remaining visible varicose veins are then removed from your leg through small 2 to 3 cm incisions. The incisions are about 3 to 5 cm apart along the line of the varicose vein. There may be a number of tiny incisions if you have extensive varicose veins.
Your surgeon closes the larger incisions with a dissolvable stitch while the smaller incisions don’t need stitches.
After the surgery, your leg is bandaged firmly from toe to groin.