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Vascular surgery

Varicose vein treatment

Varicose veins most commonly occur when the superficial veins in the leg dilate and become tortuous.

Varicose veins won’t go away without medical intervention, and although they may not cause you problems symptomatically, you may be worried about the aesthetic appearance of them, especially as they can get more prominent over time.

This can affect your confidence and self-image and may affect your quality of life. If you would like an expert opinion from our specialist vascular consultants at Woodlands, why not book an appointment at your earliest convenience to talk about your options?

With rapid diagnosis and fast access to treatment, Woodlands is the right choice for patients looking for varicose vein treatment in Darlington, County Durham or North Yorkshire. 

Vascular surgery deals with all the blood vessels, arteries, and veins that run through the body (apart from the heart and inside the head). Our specialists at Woodlands assess, investigate, diagnose and treat the diseases of these vessels. Most frequently, patients present with symptoms of varicose veins, which include:

  • Aching in the legs
  • Swelling in the legs or ankles
  • Itching
  • Tired legs
  • Cosmetic issues

We also see patients with arterial diseases, such as arterial claudication, which presents as pain in the muscles of your leg when walking, typically in the calf, coming on after you have walked a certain distance and making you stop due to the pain.

This is caused by a blockage of the blood vessels, and the muscles not getting enough blood and oxygen. These are the sorts of symptoms and conditions that our vascular surgeons have been treating at Woodlands for over 15 years.

Advancements in vascular surgery have opened up the options available to you when looking at treatment, and open surgical operations often aren’t needed.

Radiofrequency ablation (also known as a VNUS or Venefit procedure) is one of the commonest treatments we offer at Woodlands and is fully in line with the current NICE guidelines for the management of varicose veins. This involves an injection of local anaesthetic, usually around the knee, before treating the vein that pressurises the varicose veins. This takes the tension off the varicose veins and allows them to shrink back to their normal size.

Foam sclerotherapy is another potential treatment for varicose veins, and involves injecting a solution directly into the blood vessels under ultrasound control which seals them up. Some patients aren’t suitable for a local anaesthetic treatment, so an operation under general anaesthetic can be considered, where the vein itself is disconnected and removed, usually through the back of the knee or the groin. Diagnostic scans at the initial consultation will help your consultant determine which treatment is most appropriate for you, and you can decide how you wish to proceed.

Your consultant will take a detailed medical history and will ask about the various symptoms you have been experiencing. They will most likely want to know:

  • What symptoms have you been experiencing?
  • How long have you had these symptoms?
  • Can you describe the pain?
  • Have your symptoms become progressively worse?

They will also perform a physical examination, looking at any physical symptoms you have described, usually followed by an ultrasound scan. The ultrasound scan can be done there in the consultation room, without the need to go to our Imaging Services unit. This scan tends to indicate the best treatment plan for your individual needs, and your consultant can guide you through all your available options.

For patients with suspected arterial disease, an MRI or CT scan is used to assess the arteries, allowing your consultant to see if surgery is required, or if the issue will resolve itself with some lifestyle changes and medication. Any prescriptions can be collected from our dedicated on-site pharmacy, saving you further unnecessary trips.

Sometimes, your leg pain may indicate other concerns, such as spinal problems or joint issues. Taking a multi-disciplinary approach, we work collaboratively with spinal and orthopaedic surgeons for diagnosis. This means your consultant may send you for further diagnostic scans if they believe you may have other issues, and this could take the form of an x-ray, MRI or CT scan, all of which can be performed on-site at our Imaging Services unit. Whoever you see, your treatment is always consultant led and consultant delivered, ensuring a high level of specialised care throughout your visit.

Day case varicose vein treatments have been offered at Woodlands for over 15 years, resulting in a slick process from start to finish. With a pre-assessment done over the phone, patients are then seen and measured for their compression stockings in clinic. Treatment itself takes around 40 minutes, followed by a short period of observation. All in all, patients tend to be on-site for roughly 2 hours, making this an efficient option for suitable candidates.

  • Assessments ASAP – If you’ve got to the point where you are considering medical intervention for your vascular condition, you won’t want to wait for an appointment. By seeing patients rapidly, our consultants can accurately diagnose you and get you started on the right course of treatment as soon as possible.
  • Patient Satisfaction – 98.2% of other patients in 2019 said they would happily recommend Woodlands Hospital to friends and family in an independent report, and we’re confident that you’ll agree. 98.3% also said that the quality of care here at Woodlands Hospital was either ‘very good’ or ‘excellent’. We aim to make your stay with us as comfortable as possible, and these results highlight our continued efforts to ensure this is achieved.
  • Personalised care – We believe in a bespoke approach to treatment, tailoring each experience to our patients’ needs and whatever may be best for you. This is regularly reviewed, ensuring you get the necessary treatment at every stage of your patient journey.
  • Day Case Treatments – Our long-standing expertise in the vascular surgery field means our varicose vein treatments can be offered as an efficient day case procedure. With no unnecessary waiting time, you’ll be in and out of our hospital usually within 2 hours.
  • A Multidisciplinary Approach – Our teams at Woodlands work in tandem with each other to provide you with the best possible care from start to finish. Working closely with Orthopaedic specialists, as well as a dedicated team of radiographers, physiotherapists, anaesthetists, and nurses, you have support from medical professionals every step of the way during your treatment.
  • Convenient appointments – With appointments available between 10am and 8.30pm Monday-Sunday, you are sure to find an appointment slot that suits your needs and availability.
  • Park with ease – We know that parking should be the least of your worries when attending hospital, so our car park has ample space to accommodate your needs. Alternatively, we are very close to Darlington Railway Station, should you wish to visit us by train. If you have a pre-existing vascular condition that needs managing, or you’ve experienced symptoms such as aching and swelling in the legs, call our friendly reception team today to book a consultation. Our consultants can organise the necessary diagnostic tests to investigate your symptoms, and outline all treatment options for you promptly, arranging any further scans or surgery if required. For peace of mind and expert care, please contact Woodlands to book an appointment now.

Specialists offering Vascular surgery

Mr Peng Wong

Consultant Vascular Surgeon

MB ChB MD PgDipClinEd MFSTEd FEBVS (Hons) FRCSEd (Gen Surg)

Woodlands Hospital

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