Minimally Invasive Surgery
St. Catherine Specialty Hospital's surgical team performs minimally invasive surgeries and surgical procedures.
Vascular surgery is a branch of surgery that is focused on blood vessel disorders, i.e. arteries and veins. At St. Catherine Specialty Hospital, we focus exclusively on peripheral venous insufficiency.
What happens is that blood flows through the veins from the periphery to the heart through two sets of veins - a deep one located inside the muscle and a superficial one below the skin. Within those veins, there are one-way valves that allow blood to flow in one direction only (toward the heart). The valve opens up to allow the blood flow to the heart, and then it closes, preventing the blood from flowing back to the legs. If the valves are damaged or not functioning well, so-called venous insufficiency occurs.
The largest superficial vein (great saphenous vein) flows into the deep vein located in the groin area. If the valve in this area doesn't function well, it leads to the accumulation of blood in the great saphenous vein and its tributaries located under the skin. As a result, they become enlarged and curved.
Leading factors that may cause varicose veins are: obesity, old age, female gender, passive lifestyle, leg injuries, pregnancy, smoking, taking oral contraceptive pills or hormone replacement therapy and genetic predisposition.
In addition to being visible, varicose veins may also cause a number of difficulties:
- dull pain, burning feeling or feeling of heaviness in the legs (these symptoms usually occur in the evening or after sitting or standing for a longer period of time)
- swelling of the legs (especially of the feet and ankles)
- itching of the varicose area
- skin discoloration (hypostatic dermatitis), other skin conditions (dryness, tightness)
- superficial thrombophlebitis - when a blood clot and inflammation form in a small vein close to the skin surface
- open wounds
- bleeding after a minor injury
The goal of treating venous insufficiency is to alleviate symptoms and prevent possible complications.