Author(s): Winterborn RJ, Campbell WB, Heather BP, Earnshaw JJ
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Abstract OBJECTIVE: The outcome of short saphenous vein surgery is often unsatisfactory and the high litigation rate reflects this. The aim of this study was to explore the current management of short saphenous varicose veins in Great Britain and Ireland. METHODS: This was a postal questionnaire survey of the surgical members of the Vascular Surgical Society of Great Britain and Ireland. Of 532 questionnaires 379 were returned (71.2\%). RESULTS: There was diversity of opinion about the management of short saphenous veins. Eighty nine per cent of surgeons requested duplex imaging for all patients and over 50\% arranged additional duplex marking of the saphenopopliteal junction preoperatively. Only 10.4\% formally exposed and identified the popliteal vein during saphenopopliteal ligation, the majority (75.7\%) dissected down the short saphenous vein to visualise the junction. The short saphenous vein was stripped routinely by 14.5\% of surgeons, the majority preferring to excise a proximal segment of up to 10 cm (55.1\%). Compared with long saphenous vein surgery, surgeons were generally more likely to warn patients of nerve damage but equally likely to warn of deep vein thrombosis. A small number of surgeons failed to warn patients of these complications. CONCLUSION: The variation in management of short saphenous veins may be explained by the lack of definitive clinical trials in this area.
This article was published in Eur J Vasc Endovasc Surg
and referenced in Journal of Vascular Medicine & Surgery