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Therapy of varicose veins (vascular surgery)

The Clinic for Vascular Surgery at the University Hospital Zurich offers all established procedures for the treatment of varicose veins. All procedures are performed on an outpatient basis as a rule, with a short period of hospitalization of one to two days being planned in exceptional cases.

Surgical removal of varicose veins

The superficial vein is exposed in the region of the confluence, ligated and removed through a small incision in the groin or in the back of the knee A so-called stripper is inserted into this superficial vein and advanced in to the lower leg. The stripper together with the vein is pulled out and removed through another small skin incision. The remaining side branches are pulled out via mini-incisions in the skin with the aid of a hook.

Minimally invasive and catheter-guided procedures

ClosureFast
Medtronic’s ClosureFast procedure is a minimally invasive technique.
A radiowave catheter is thereby  inserted into the abnormal vein. The catheter tip delivers heat evenly and repeatedly, causing the inner vessel wall to contract, collapse and occlude the vein. The entire procedure is performed under ultrasound guidance and under local anesthesia in our clinic (so-called tumescent local anesthesia). The remaining side branches are pulled out via mini-incisions in the skin with the aid of a hook or sclerosed with a special foam.

Endovenous laser therapy (EVLT)
This minimally invasive procedure is an alternative to the radiofrequency method. Since the laser catheter is thinner, the EVLT procedure is also suitable for small-caliber or very tortuous veins. Laser therapy is also well-suited for treatment of so-called recurrent varicose veins. The connecting branches between the superficial and deep venous system can also be optimally treated with this method. The treatment is performed under local anesthesia in our clinic (so-called tumescent local anesthesia). The remaining side branches are pulled out via mini-incisions in the skin with the aid of a hook or sclerosed with a special foam.

VenaSeal
This procedure involves occluding veins with a small amount of a specially developed medical adhesive (1-3 ml, equivalent to about half a teaspoon). Only a needle prick is required for infiltrating a small amount of a local anesthetic. The leg to be treated is examined using ultrasound, an essential investigation for identifying the correct access site and planning treatment. Compression stockings do not have to be worn after the operation after this procedure, which is well-tolerated by patients even during the summer months. The procedure is not yet recognized by the mandatory health insurance in Switzerland and is a self-payer service. The procedure is performed under local anesthesia.

Foam sclerotherapy
Spider veins and relatively narrow veins are suitable for sclerotherapy. Foam is injected into the vein via a fine cannula or a venous catheter, which triggers an inflammatory process in the vessel wall and occludes the vein over time. The procedure is performed under local anesthesia.

Aftercare

Compression stockings must be worn after most procedures for varicose veins to prevent swelling. We recommend wearing the stockings day and night for two weeks after the operation and during the day for another two weeks. The patient returns for the first follow-up one week after the procedure. A final follow-up with ultrasound is performed six weeks after the operation If healing proceeds normally. Suture removal is not required since self-absorbing sutures are used.

For patients

Register directly with the Department of Vascular Surgery for your first appointment.

Tel. .+41 44 255 20 39

Opening hours:
8.00 a.m. – 12.00 p.m.
1:00 p.m. – 5.00 p.m.

For referring

Simply refer your patients online

University Hospital Zürich
Department of Vascular Surgery
Rämistrasse 100

Tel. .+41 44 255 20 39