Endovenous (pinhole) vein surgery was introduced into the UK by Professor Mark Whiteley in 1999. Since then we have seen an increase in the amount of vein clinics opening up around the country. While this offers greater patient choice it can also lead to confusion on which Clinic to use to treat vein related conditions. To help patients make a decision we wanted to provide some advice on what to look for and a recent patient case study on why choosing the right Clinic is so important.
All Clinics’ should offer patients the same experience and standards of treatment however sadly this isn’t always the case. Unfortunately we have seen many patients at The Whiteley Clinic, who have received treatment elsewhere and experienced an unsatisfactory outcome following their treatment with their condition deteriorating rather than improving or being cured.
When choosing a clinic to have treatment we recommend looking out for these following points:
• Make sure the Clinic follows the NICE guidelines.
• Make sure they are CQC registered. This ensures you receive safe, high quality care. Those who are not registered could be practising illegally and may not have adequate insurances if anything goes wrong.
• Make sure the scan is performed by a Vascular trained Sonographer, who will perform a detailed scan to avoid missing relevant veins, which may impact varicose vein recurrence.
• Ensure that they do not offer Vein Stripping. This out-dated technique performed under general anaesthetic, causes pain, bruising and longer recover times to Endovenous vein surgery.
• Research the Surgeon and ensure they are registered with the General Medical Council and read the patient reviews of the Clinic.
• Make sure a Surgeon talks you through the recommended treatment plan. You may have questions and a Surgeon rather than other Clinic personnel is the best person to answer these.
In line with NICE Guidelines, patients who are treated at The Whiteley Clinic can expect a dedicated team of specialist Sonographers and Surgeons who diagnose and treat all vein related conditions.Our unique approach recently treated a 54 year old man who had suffered with leg swelling for over 10 years. Before visiting The Whiteley Clinic, he found a vein clinic online who promised a cure for his problematic veins. He received a simple endovenous laser operation under local anaesthetic and happily walked home thinking his varicose veins would no longer be a problem.Unfortunately, the treatment wasn’t effective and made no difference to his swelling or skin damage he could see and his condition continued to deteriorate. After several months it became clear to him that his condition was not going to improve and decided to come to The Whiteley Clinic for a consultation.
After an in-depth consultation and a duplex ultrasound scan performed by a trained Vascular Sonographer we were able to see the severity of his condition and the veins that the previous clinic had missed. This included the two large incompetent perforators directly underneath the skin damage. These incompetent perforating veins are not checked for by most doctors and cheaper vein clinics.They require a lot of skill both to diagnose with an ultrasound and also to treat. Although many doctors and insurance companies still argue that these are not worth closing, there is now evidence to show these veins should always be closed, particularly if associated with skin damage or leg ulcers.
After discussing his unique treatment plan and explaining the different stages of varicose veins he was experiencing, the patient proceeded with The Whiteley Clinic. We are pleased share that at his review today six weeks after his final treatment we could see that the swelling of his leg has almost gone. Plus the discolouration is starting to lighten and he is very happy with his results. In hindsight he commented, “If I had known then what I know now I wouldn’t have made a decision on which Clinic to treat my varicose veins purely on cost.”
Because he has undergone treatment by the Whiteley Protocol, he has the lowest possible chance of recurrence in the future. This is the same as the risk of someone getting varicose veins for the first time.
This patient required the following treatments to achieve this result:
• Endovenous Laser Ablation
• TRLOP Closure
• Ultrasound guided foam sclerotherapy
At The Whiteley Clinic we follow the NICE guidelines and we are CQC registered. We have also developed The Whiteley Protocol, which all staff at The Whiteley Clinic follow. This ensures the best possible treatment with the lowest chance of recurrence. To book call today on 0330 058 1850 or email [email protected]