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Vascular surgery

Vascular surgery can treat problems that occur in your blood vessels.

Veins, arteries, and capillaries carry blood around the body, with arteries carrying it away from the heart and veins carrying it towards the heart.

Veins have special valves that stop blood flowing back on itself. If these valves stop working properly for any reason, the blood is able to move back through the veins in the wrong direction, causing pressure to build up in the vessels. Over time, this increased pressure may cause the vessels nearest the skin to enlarge and twist, showing up on the skin as unsightly blue or dark purple lies. These are known as varicose veins.

If smaller veins in the leg are affected, thin, spider-like marks can appear on the legs. These are known as spider or thread veins.

Sometimes, a build-up of pressure in a vein can damage the skin, resulting in a venous leg ulcer.

Unfortunately, once a varicose vein or spider vein has appeared, it will not resolve naturally. Indeed, left untreated they may become bigger and more visible. The only way of treating varicose veins once they have formed is with varicose vein surgery. Unfortunately, this is not available for most patients on the NHS.

A Consultant Vascular Surgeon investigates and treats problems in the blood vessels (except those in the heart and the head, which are managed by cardiologists and neurosurgeons respectively).

At BMI The Hampshire Clinic in Basingstoke, Hampshire, highly experienced Consultants provide varicose vein surgery and treatment for leg ulcers. 

If you are not happy with your varicose veins, either because of how they look or the way they feel, you do not have to just put up with it. Effective treatments are available to help improve the appearance of your legs and to resolve any symptoms you may be struggling with.

Left untreated, varicose veins will often become larger and more prominent over time. They can cause itchy, painful, achy legs, and may make you increasingly self-conscious about the appearance of your legs. Many people with varicose veins or leg ulcers will choose to wear clothing specifically to cover their legs, avoiding knee length garments like shorts and skirts.

While anyone can develop varicose veins, they are more common in people who spend a lot of time on their feet (like hairdressers and shop assistants) and those aged between 20 – 50. They tend to affect women more frequently than men.

Varicose veins are no longer routinely treated on the NHS as they are perceived as more of a lifestyle problem than a medical one. This can be quite frustrating for anyone who is unhappy with the appearance of their legs, or who is getting symptoms caused by their varicose veins.

The people who visit BMI The Hampshire Clinic for private varicose vein surgery do so to: 

  • LOOK better 
  • FEEL better  
  • PREVENT anything worse developing in the future (like a venous ulcer) 

If you are unhappy with varicose veins, either because of how they look or the way they make your legs feel, you do not have to just put up with it. Effective treatments are available to help improve the appearance of your legs and to relieve your symptoms. Why not book a private appointment to discuss treatment options with an experience Consultant Vascular Surgeon? 

Varicose vein surgery lowers the pressure in the affected vessel(s) so that the superficial veins reduce in size and become less visible.

At BMI The Hampshire Clinic, a variety of varicose vein treatments are available: 

  • Ultrasound-guided foam sclerotherapy – Sclerotherapy involves the injection of a chemical into a vein, under ultrasound guidance, to seal it up.
  • Thermal ablation – Also known as VNUS Closure, a thin, flexible wire is passed into the vein and used to position a special probe. Heat energy from the probe seals the vein up from the inside, lowering the pressure in the varicose veins and allowing them to return to their normal size. This is carried out under a local anaesthetic, and because only small cuts are made in the skin, there is less pain and bruising, reduced scarring, and a faster recovery.
  • Surgical removal (ligation and stripping) of the affected veins – when U/S-guided foam sclerotherapy or thermal ablation have not been successful. 

Your Consultant will be able to discuss to the most suitable treatment for you once they have carried out a diagnostic scan during your initial appointment (see section below). 

When you first meet your Consultant at BMI The Hampshire Clinic, they will talk with you about your varicose veins and any symptoms they are causing.

They will examine your leg and carry out a duplex ultrasound. This shows the speed of blood flow and the structure of the leg veins, and is used to confirm where the veins are originating so that the ideal treatment can be planned.

This is usually all that is needed to confirm a diagnosis and to plan the appropriate treatment. Your Consultant will talk you through the recommended treatment, explaining everything to you. If you have any questions or concerns, they will be very happy to discuss these with you.

Should you choose to go ahead with treatment, we will book your varicose vein surgery at the earliest opportunity.

Some vascular symptoms may require further investigation, such as an MRI or CT scan, to better assess the health of the vessels. These are easily arranged for you if required.

Similarly, if your consultant suspects there may be another reason for your symptoms, such as arthritic damage or a trapped nerve, they will refer you to the most appropriate on-site specialist for further investigation.  

People living in Basingstoke and the surrounding areas choose to visit BMI The Hampshire Clinic for a number of reasons: 

  • Rapid access to an expert – When varicose veins are affecting you enough to seek medical help, you won’t to have to wait months to be seen. The streamlined nature of our private vein clinic means we can book you a private appointment with an experienced Consultant Vascular Surgeon without delay. 
  • Fixed-price treatment – Clear, fixed pricing for varicose vein surgery means you will never have to worry about any unexpected charges.  
  • Consultant-led – The Consultant you see for your first appointment is the same one who will carry out your varicose vein surgery, ensuring excellent continuity of care. Care is always consultant-led, and you will never be treated by a more junior doctor 
  • Experienced staff – Your Consultant is aided by an experienced team of healthcare professionals including radiologists, anaesthetists, and nurses. With quick, easy access to any member of this wider team, you will always see the most appropriate person for your needs. 
  • Leg ulcer specialists – with a dedicated leg ulcer clinic, people travel from all over England and Wales for expert advice and treatment from our Consultants. 
  • Superb facilities – including excellent on-site parking, a fantastic hydrotherapy pool, and modern treatment rooms and diagnostic equipment. 
  • Location - Located in a picturesque village on the outskirts of Basingstoke, the hospital is close to both the M3 and M4 motorway and very easy to travel to. 

If varicose veins are causing you problems, why not book a private appointment to get clarity about treatments available to you? We look forward to welcoming you to BMI The Hampshire Clinic and helping you to access the treatment you need without delay. 

Specialists Offering Vascular surgery

Dr Steve Tristram

Consultant Vascular Physician

MB ChB RCOG D.Obst

BMI The Hampshire Clinic

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