Radiofrequency ablation (RFA) is a medical procedure used to treat varicose veins. It involves using a radiofrequency or laser device to heat and close off affected veins. This procedure is minimally invasive.
During the procedure, a catheter is inserted into the affected vein, and the device is then used to heat the vein walls. This causes the walls to collapse and seal shut, preventing the blood from flowing through the vein and causing it to shrink. This procedure is typically done on the larger veins in the legs, but can also be performed on other areas of the body. RFA is generally considered a safe and effective treatment for varicose veins, with few risks or complications. It is less invasive than traditional vein stripping, which is a more invasive procedure that involves removing the affected vein from the body.
RFA also has a quicker recovery time, with patients typically returning to their normal activities within a few days or weeks after the procedure.
The most common side effect of RFA is bruising, which is usually minor and typically resolves within a few weeks.