The effect of long saphenous vein stripping on deep venous reflux.Eur J Vasc Endovasc Surg. 2004 Jul; 28(1):104-7.EJ
The addition of long saphenous vein (LSV) stripping to sapheno-femoral junction (SFJ) disconnection and multiple stab avulsions (MSAs) in the course of varicose vein (VV) surgery is associated with a significant reduction in recurrence, and a significant improvement in quality of life. It is hypothesised that these benefits relate, at least in part, to a favourable effect of stripping on deep venous reflux.
To examine the effect of long saphenous vein (LSV) stripping on deep venous reflux (DVR).
This was prospective study of 62 consecutive patients (77 limbs) CEAP class 2-6, undergoing SFJ disconnection and MSAs, with and without successful stripping of the LSV to the knee. A duplex ultrasound examination was performed pre-operatively and at a median (IQR) of 24 (23-25) months post-operatively. Completely stripped limbs were defined as those in whom complete stripping of the LSV to the knee was confirmed on post-operative duplex. Reflux >/=0.5 s. was considered pathological.
Pre-operatively, 32 (42%) limbs had deep venous reflux (DVR). Post-operative duplex at 24 months revealed that the LSV had been completely stripped in 29 (38%) limbs. In patients with pre-operative DVR, complete stripping was associated with a significant reduction in the prevalence of superficial femoral vein (SFV) (p<0.001) and popliteal vein (PV) (p=0.016), McNemar test) on post-operative duplex. By contrast, in patients without pre-operative DVR, incomplete stripping was associated the development of SFV (p=0.031) and PV (p=0.008) reflux.
Complete LSV stripping abolishes DVR in a significant proportion of limbs, whereas failure to strip is frequently associated with the development of new DVR. These data support for routine stripping and suggest that the benefits of stripping may relate, at least in part, to a favourable impact on deep venous function.