Vein Stripping vs. Endovenous Ablation: Which is Better?

Stripping Endovenous

Vein Stripping vs. Endovenous Ablation: Which is Better and How Does it Impact Health?

Do you suffer from varicose veins, or chronic venous insufficiency with swelling, ulcers, and other symptoms? Then you may have to consider vein stripping and endovenous ablation. This blog post will discuss the differences between these two treatments and which one may be better for you and your health.

What is Vein Stripping?

Vein stripping is a surgical procedure that has been used to treat varicose veins since the early 20th century. It is the traditional method of vein treatment and involves the removal of the large problematic veins that run along the surface of the leg. It is performed under general or local anaesthetic and requires entry through a small incision in the skin, usually just above the knee.

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This surgical procedure takes approximately an hour and removes the effected veins through a series of incisions up the leg. To finish, the incisions are closed up with sutures. This is a relatively invasive procedure with a long recovery time of up to several weeks.

What is Endovenous Ablation?

Endovenous ablation, also known as radiofrequency or laser ablation, is the latest method for treating varicose veins. It is a minimally invasive procedure, meaning no cutting and incisions are made. It works by using high energy waves or beams to heat and ‘melt’ the lining of the vein along its length, causing it to be reabsorbed by the surrounding tissue.

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This procedure only takes 15 to 20 minutes, is performed under local anaesthetic, and the recovery time is much shorter than that of the vein stripping method. It is not suitable for very complex vein issues but, generally speaking, is an effective solution with a successful long-term outcome.

Which is Better?

Ultimately, it depends on your individual condition, what your veins look like, and the stage of your varicose veins. In most cases, patients that suffer from mild to moderate varicose veins can opt for endovenous ablation, and those with more serious cases might be better suited for vein stripping.

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It is important to note the potential risks associated with both treatments, such as infection, nerve damage, and damage to surrounding tissue. Therefore, it is essential to consult and work with a trusted vein specialist who can advise on the best option for you and your health.


Vein stripping and endovenous ablation are two possible treatments for varicose veins. Whether you choose one or the other will be heavily dependent on the severity of your condition. Seeking advice from a specialist who can weigh up your options based on personal experience and medical practice is the best way to ensure you receive the best treatment.