Vascular Specialists of San Francisco

John B. Long, M.D., P.C., Marc A.Levine, M.D., Daniel R. Nathanson, M.D.

3838 California Street, Suite 612

San Francisco, CA   94118

(415)  221-7056    Fax (415) 221-7058






Diet:                       Return to normal the day of your surgery.


Activity:                 Begin walking the day of surgery.  Avoid prolonged standing in one place.  Any time you are sitting, elevate your leg at least 90 degrees.


                                You may slowly return to your normal level of physical activity.  Begin walking at least 15 minutes each day following your surgery and acclimate yourself slowly back to your normal activity.  You may do more walking if you have no discomfort.  More information will be given to you at your first follow-up visit.  Doing lots of stretches for your legs can help the recovery process.


Bandages:             The surgical bandages should remain on for a minimum of 3 days.  Your doctor will remove them in the office at your follow-up appointment.  You may remove them prior to that appointment if different arrangements have been made.


Normal Post-Operative Changes:


Swelling:               It is common to have swelling and some bruising around the bandage (at the ankle or thigh).  This is normal and is caused from the tight compression from the bandage pushing fluid towards the foot (just as when you wear tight shoes and your foot becomes swollen).  This resolves shortly after the bandage is removed and with leg elevation.  You should continue to walk.  


Bruising:               You may notice some bruising after removal of your bandage.  This can occur along the track of treated veins, areas of skin incisions, and at the ankles.  This will improve gradually after surgery.  Use of

arnica cream (from a health food store) can help.


Numbness:            If numbness occurs, it is caused by irritation to the nerve that runs alongside of the treated vein.  This will resolve slowly.  You should note improvement each week.  Massaging along the track of the treated veins 3-4 times a day can help with the numbness.


Pain:                      Rarely, patients experience discomfort and redness along the path of treated veins approximately one week after your procedure.  This is an inflammatory reaction your body is having to the occluded vein.  Stretching about 3-4 times a day can help with the discomfort.



1.             Occasionally, you may actually be able to feel the treated vein that has been occluded.  This will feel like a cord under your skin.  Massaging the area vigorously will help and this will improve slowly after your surgery.  


2.             Noticing more aching and even swelling a week after surgery is normal.  This results from removal of the compression bandage and being more active.


3.             Compression stockings may be worn at any time after removal of dressings.  However, if the stockings irritate the incision areas, it is okay to wait to wear them after the incisions are healed. They are especially helpful when flying and/or sitting for long times.               


4.             Periodic elevation of legs for about 5-10 minutes during the first month after your surgery will decrease any swelling and/or aching.


If you have had a General Anesthesia:

A.       Do not drive a car or operate complicated machinery for 24 hours.

B.       Avoid making important decisions or signing important papers for 24 hours.

C.       No alcoholic beverage for 24 hours.

D.       Diet of liquids or light nourishment for your first meal.  If you tolerate this, you may resume your normal diet.