What to Expect After Varicose Vein Treatment
At Vascular & Interventional Specialists of Prescott, we understand that you want to know what to expect after varicose vein treatment. And while we can’t tell you exactly what your experience will be, our general guide to recovery can help you mentally prepare for the days and weeks ahead.
If you’re having one of the two most common surgeries for varicose veins – endovenous laser ablation and ambulatory phlebectomy — you’ll usually be encouraged to walk immediately following the surgery. Then, once you’ve been given instructions by your doctor, you’ll probably find yourself wearing a bandage and compression socks as you head home with the help of a friend or family member.
While you recover, you can watch all the movies and eat all the popcorn you want – but you can’t take a hot shower or bath – and you’ll need to take a few short walks throughout the day. And, while you’re sitting, you’ll need to elevate your leg(s) and possibly even ice the surgical site.
One- to Two-Week Recovery Period
After the first 24 to 48 hours, you can take a hot shower (as long as the water isn’t too hot), but until the surgical wound has completely healed, you’ll have to avoid baths and swimming.
Just like you did immediately post-op, you’ll have to continue wearing compression socks for a few days and avoid sitting or standing for long periods of time. You’ll also have to take a few short walks every day to help improve circulation and avoid blood clots.
As you heal, your walks may become longer, and you might feel like you’re ready to run a marathon, but don’t. Before resuming any strenuous activity, be sure that your doctor agrees that you’re ready for it.
You will have a follow-up ultrasound after your vein ablation procedure to ensure there are no complications from the procedure
Even though vein treatments are common, there can be complications and infections, so it’s important that you know the signs and contact your doctor if:
- You experience bleeding that won’t stop even after elevating your leg and applying pressure to the surgical site, or have bleeding that continues off and on for a day or two.
- The surgical site becomes red, warm or swollen, or if you notice new swelling or fluid leaking from the site.
- You experience pain that keeps you from your normal activities.
In addition, you should avoid taking any medications that increase bleeding, so be sure to tell your doctor before your surgery if you take blood thinners and resume taking them only when it’s safe to do so. Likewise, because some pain medications, even over-the-counter options, can increase the likelihood of bleeding, it’s important to take only the medications recommended by your doctor.
If you have varicose veins and want to learn more about your treatment options, visit vispdocs.com or call 928.771.8477.