Skip to Content Top

Radiofrequency Thermal Ablation: Minimally Invasive Solution for Varicose Veins

Close up photo of varicose veins on the back of someone's left knee.

Varicose veins are a common condition that affects many people, particularly women. They are swollen and twisted veins that appear blue or purple and are often found in the legs and feet.

While they may seem like a cosmetic concern, varicose veins can cause discomfort and pain and even lead to more serious medical conditions if left untreated. Fortunately, there are treatment options available, including Radiofrequency Thermal Ablation (RF). This minimally invasive procedure has become a popular solution for varicose veins, so let's dive in and learn more about it.

What is Radiofrequency Thermal Ablation (RF)?

RF uses radiofrequency heat to close and seal the saphenous veins–two large superficial veins in the leg. During the procedure, the RF catheter heats a seven-centimeter vein segment (or three centimeters for shorter vein lengths) in one 20-second interval. A feedback mechanism measures the heat parameters to automatically regulate therapeutic power. The heat from the catheter collapses the vein, creating a seal and occluding the vessel. The blood that was once flowing through the vein will then be redirected to nearby healthy veins, improving blood flow and reducing the appearance of varicose veins.

Benefits of RF

Less Invasive Than Traditional Treatments

One of the major benefits of RF is its less invasive nature compared to traditional vein stripping. Because the procedure requires only a small incision and the use of local anesthesia, there is no need for general anesthesia or a hospital stay. Patients can usually return to normal activities within a day or two, and the recovery period is much shorter and less painful than with vein stripping.

High Success Rate

Another benefit of RF is its high success rate. Studies have shown that RF has a success rate of up to 98%, which is comparable to or higher than traditional vein stripping. Furthermore, the procedure carries fewer risks and complications than vein stripping, such as nerve damage and bleeding.

RF: What to Expect

If you're considering RF, you may be wondering what to expect during and after the procedure. The procedure typically takes around one hour to complete, after which you will be monitored for a short period before being allowed to go home.

You may experience some discomfort, bruising, and swelling in the days following the procedure, but these symptoms should subside within a week or two. It is recommended that you avoid strenuous activities and heavy lifting for a few days following the procedure, but most patients are able to return to work and other normal activities relatively quickly.

Find Out if RF Is Right for You

RF is a minimally invasive and highly effective solution for varicose veins. With its high success rate, shorter recovery period, and fewer risks and complications compared to traditional vein stripping, it's no wonder why so many people are choosing this option.

If you're experiencing discomfort or self-consciousness due to varicose veins, RF may be the solution you've been seeking. Don't hesitate to talk to Colorado’s Vein Specialist and find out if this procedure is right for you. With minimal pain and little downtime, it's a worthwhile option to explore if you're dealing with the discomfort of varicose veins. Your self-care should not be something to compromise on.

Contact Albert Vein Institute at (303) 857-5111 for more information about how our specialists can help with all your vein needs.