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What happens to the circulation of the leg after ablation of the saphenous vein?

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What happens to the circulation of the leg after ablation of the saphenous vein? Often, when treating varicose veins, we are required to seal off the greater saphenous vein, using either radio frequency or laser generated heat. This procedure is very safe and very effective in the treatment of varicose veins but does raise the question of what happens to the circulation after this vein is no longer patent. The vein is being sealed off because it is doing the opposite of what the other veins are doing. Normal veins in the leg bring blood back to the heart to pick up more oxygen after they have dropped it off in the foot and the leg. Varicose veins form when one of veins valves do not work and it allows blood to move backwards and fill up the leg. By sealing off that vein, that gets the vein that is causing the problems out of the picture and allows the others to do their work. It is similar to being on a boat with a haul on it. We all have a bucket, but one of us decides to use our bucket to bring water into the boat. If we kick that person off of the boat, the rest of us will have a much easier time staying afloat, because now all we have to do is deal with the haul. It is a similar situation with the legs. Once the vein that is bringing blood the wrong way into the leg is taken out of the picture, the other veins have much less work to do and can get their job done much more effectively.

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