Subfascial endoscopic perforator vein surgery: a preliminary report.Ann Vasc Surg. 1996 May; 10(3):211-9.AV
Although the open Linton subfascial perforator vein interruption operation succeeded, for the most part, in preventing recurrent venous ulceration, it was associated with morbidity and prolonged hospitalization. We have attempted to obtain the beneficial effects of perforator interruption by the less invasive procedure of subfascial endoscopic perforator vein surgery using laparoscopic instrumentation and limited or no hospitalization. A total of 31 consecutive operations were performed in 30 patients. Sixteen women and 14 men were entered into the study, and all of them had severe chronic venous insufficiency with either open or healed ulcers. Operations were carried out without gas insufflation, in 17 without a hemostatic tourniquet, and in 13 entirely on an outpatient basis. The 18 hospitalizations produced a total of 49 days of inpatient care (mean 2.72 days). One to six perforating veins were encountered in these operations, and veins identified as perforators were electrocoagulated or clipped and sectioned. Sixteen limbs had severe chronic venous insufficiency or healed ulcers, and 15 had open ulcers. In 13 limbs, ulcers were intermittently present for 1 to 5 years. Seven of these healed within 4 weeks of operation and four others within 8 weeks. Two healed more than 8 weeks after surgery. In two limbs with ulcers that were present for 1 to 6 months, healing took place within 4 weeks of the operation in both. Complications included atelectasis in one patient, cellulitis requiring antibiotic therapy in three, wound hematomas not requiring intervention in two, and wound seroma not requiring therapy in one. This preliminary experience suggests that perforator vein interruption can be accomplished using existing instrumentation and a variety of technical modifications to achieve the objectives of the Linton operation without the attendant morbidity. Videoscopic instrumentation obtains benefits of subfascial perforator vein interruption without morbidity of the open operations. This preliminary study suggests that the operative procedure is attended by minimum morbidity without the need for rehospitalization. Long-term observation will be required to assess the procedure definitively, but the short-term objectives can be safely accomplished with minimum use of inpatient facilities.