What is VENEFIT?

VENEFIT is a minimally invasive procedure that uses radiofrequency energy to effectively treat varicose veins. VENEFIT is the trademark name of the procedure given by the company ( Covidien) that manufactures the radiofrequency equipment. The radiofrequency treatment was previously called the VNUS procedure and is also known as the Closure Fast procedure.

How does it work?

A special ultrasound machine (Colour Flow Duplex Ultrasound Scanner) is used to visualise veins below the surface of the skin. A small catheter is passed through a tiny skin incision and guided by the use of ultrasound imaging into the deep vein to be treated. Radiofrequency (RF) energy is then precisely delivered through the catheter to heat the inside of the vein wall.When enough heat is delivered, the collagen in the vein wall contracts, causing a segment of the vein to collapse and close off around the catheter. The catheter is progressively withdrawn treating more segments of vein until the entire length of vein has been closed (hence the term ‘Closure Fast’ that is also used for this treatment). Once the vein is closed then blood flow naturally becomes redirected through other healthy veins.

How established is VENEFIT?

The RF method of treating varicose veins has been performed since 1998 and well over 500,000 VENEFIT procedures have been performed worldwide. The procedure is approved by many leading regulatory bodies including the Federal Drug Authority (FDA) in the USA and the National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence in the UK.

When is VENEFIT used?

The VENEFIT is used for major large varicose veins that in the past would have required surgical stripping in hospital. The procedure is not designed to treat spider veins however successful treatment can result in cosmetic improvement.

How long does the procedure take?

The VENEFIT procedure typically takes about 45 to 60 minutes. A patient can expect to be in the rooms for 2 to 3 hours due to the pre and post treatment requirements.

Where is the treatment done?

The treatment is done in our rooms as a walk in and walk out day procedure. No general anaesthetic is necessary.

Is the procedure painful?

No. Local anaesthesia is used for the small skin incision where the catheter is inserted and during the procedure patients typically report feeling minimal or no discomfort.

How soon can I resume activities?

Patients are able to walk immediately after treatment and most resume work the day after treatment. Some restriction in the first 2 weeks after treatment may be required from very strenuous activities such as heavy lifting, vigorous exercise or prolonged periods of standing. It is important that patients wear compression stockings and have a 30 minute daily walk for 2 weeks after treatment. There can be some restrictions on flying for 2 to 4 weeks after treatment.

What happens to the treated vein?

The vein that has been closed by the VENEFIT treatment remains collapsed and gradually becomes fibrous in nature and over time is completely absorbed into the surrounding tissue.

What if I need the leg vein for bypass surgery in the future?

The VENEFIT procedure is only used to treat damaged varicose veins that would not have been suitable for bypass surgery. Vascular surgeons can use other healthy veins if bypass surgery might be necessary in the future.

What are the advantages of the VENEFIT procedure?

VENEFIT is a minimally invasive procedure that can be performed in rooms as a fast and effective outpatient alternative to surgical stripping. Patients report minimal scarring, bruising, pain or swelling with a rapid return to normal activity. International studies show excellent clinical results in both the short and long term.

How much does VENEFIT cost?

A special ultrasound machine (Colour Flow Duplex Ultrasound Scanner) is used to visualise veins below the surface of the skin. A small catheter is passed through a tiny skin incision and guided by the use of ultrasound imaging into the deep vein to be treated. Radiofrequency (RF) energy is then precisely delivered through the catheter to heat the inside of the vein wall.When enough heat is delivered, the collagen in the vein wall contracts, causing a segment of the vein to collapse and close off around the catheter. The catheter is progressively withdrawn treating more segments of vein until the entire length of vein has been closed (hence the term ‘Closure Fast’ that is also used for this treatment). Once the vein is closed then blood flow naturally becomes redirected through other healthy veins.