Michael Libert, 68, of Greenfield, has been pain-free for nine months after seeking treatment for varicose veins from the experts at the Froedtert & MCW FORME Aesthetic and Vein Center. Michael was experiencing swelling and cramps in both legs. The veins in his legs were bulged with blood, which wasn’t circulating well. He was often jolted awake in the middle of the night by the pain.
“My muscles felt like they were going to tear off my bone,” Michael said.
Endovenous Ablation of Varicose Veins
In April, Michael saw Kellie Brown, MD, a vascular surgeon. She performed a noninvasive procedure called an endovenous ablation on both of Michael’s legs. An endovenous ablation uses a laser to seal off the faulty vein.
“You don’t need to go to the operating room for this,” Dr. Brown said. “We do this in our clinic, under local anesthetic and, typically, the procedure lasts about 45 minutes.”
An endovenous ablation is a major advancement from the traditional method of vein stripping, which involves incisions to remove or tie off the problem veins. There are other noninvasive methods to consider. These procedures, referred to as nonthermal techniques, use glue or other chemicals to close the vein.
“The idea behind all of these techniques is to close the vein,” Dr. Brown said. “When we close the vein, blood is no longer pooling in it, and we alleviate the patient’s symptoms.”
While the symptoms for varicose veins are usually not critical, Dr. Brown said it is important to seek treatment if they interfere with your daily activities.
Michael put the procedure off and tried to deal with his symptoms because he was afraid of even more pain in recovery, but he was able to walk around immediately after the procedure, and his cramps disappeared.
“The swelling in my legs has gone down, and it was painless. I’m back to my normal self,” Michael said.
Learn more about varicose vein treatment.