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I had surgery on the varicose veins in my left leg last week. Apparently they only do one leg at a time so I will have to do all of this again soon on my right leg, at least I know now what to expect! First of all I had my initial appointment and leg ultrasounds on both legs back in December. After that I had to wear compression hose/socks (medical grade, at least 20-30 mmHg) every day for three months and then make a follow up appointment. Well if you know me then you know that I am the Queen of Procrastination and waited until July to make my follow up appointment which didn’t happen until August. Ugh.
After that appointment I scheduled my first surgery for September and here we are! My Dr let me choose which leg I wanted to do first because we would be doing both eventually and I chose my left leg. This was the leg that I showed you the pic of and the one that had the most varicosities near the surface of the skin. It was gross to look at and was pretty painful. My right leg is actually worse internally but doesn’t hurt as bad, for now!
Here is the pic I showed you back in December for reference…
…these veins are down the outside of my knee and on the back of my calf. They also crisscrossed their way across the front of my thigh and were all bumpy and sticky-outy. Gross. Also- not attractive. At all.
So that’s why I chose to have my left leg fixed first. I got to the hospital early Tuesday morning and checked in. I was escorted back to my pre-op room immediately and was given a fun nurse that totally put me at ease. Perk of having surgery at the hospital I work at? I like to think so!
I was given my IV, had all my unsightly veins marked off my a resident physician, my poor leg looked like it had a treasure map drawn on it! And then I was off to surgery! They tell me I did fine and that the surgery lasted 1.5 hours. I obviously don’t remember any of that, only waking up in recovery and wanting really badly to go back to sleep. HA!
I was released pretty soon after I woke up and my stepmom, Charlotte, drove me home. She stayed with me for a little while and then left to go home. I have to say up front that I have a pretty high pain tolerance. I didn’t even get my pain pill prescription filled and toughed it out on Aleve alone. I can honestly say that recovery wasn’t that bad. I was mostly just sore but luckily I had nurse Sophie to take care of me! HA!
I came home in this really fun hose/sock thing that I had to leave on until my follow up ultrasound appointment on Friday. I literally wore that damn thing for four days straight both day and night time. Ugh.
Now that I am a week out I can officially just wear it, or my regular compression socks during the day and sleep with nothing. Can I just say that that feels like pure bliss?? YAS!!
Wearing that damn stocking for four whole days 24/7 also meant no showers, no baths, no nothing…um, gross!! Don’t worry, I made do with some “bird baths” and a blowout. So it all worked out in the end!
So for the first day of surgery/recovery and the second day of recovery I had to get up and walk ten minutes every hour. This royally sucked the first day but wasn’t bad the second day. Like I said earlier, I wasn’t in much pain I was just more sore and uncomfortable. When I sit or lay down I have to have my leg stretched out, no bending at the knee. That’s kind of awkward at first but I kind of got used to that. Day three and forward I was to “resume normal activity” which I mostly did.
I was pretty stiff and sore until pretty much Monday and since yesterday I have felt pretty darn good. My leg is still a little stiff and sore sometimes but it’s nothing I can’t handle and I am pretty much back to my normal ways of doing things Sleeping is still a little weird but much better now that I can sleep sock and stocking free!!
Of course I wouldn’t be a proper blogger if I didn’t take pics of everything but I won’t share the gross and gory pics with you guys, only my besties get tortured with those “selfies”!! This first pic was taken the day after surgery…
…not too bad, right?? What you don’t see is the bruise that went from my groin to halfway down my knee. It’s still there and that’s what’s the most sore!! All of those veins that you could se on the surface the doctors had to take out. So all of those little stab wounds on my legs are placed the had to cut open, grab the vein and literally cut and pull it out. Creepy and cool all at the same time!
By Friday at my ultrasound it was already looking a lot better…
…again I stopped at the crazy bruise because none should be subjected to that. It’s still pretty ugly looking!!
So that’s it so far for my first varicose vein surgery! I am pretty pleased with the results so far and I can’t wait to see what my leg will look like when I am totally healed! I can already tell a week after that I am going to feel so much better!! Now I can’t wait to do the right leg and just be done!!
Do you have varicose veins??
Have you had varicose vein surgery??
Alli Smith says
I’ve never been this up close and personal with varicose vein surgery. I can tell already that your legs are looking totally awesome. Once, when my son was a little boy, we saw a woman that had really bad veins and he said to me, “Look, mommy, she has a map on her legs.” I was mortified and had to explain to him what it was and to never, ever say anything like that again. Thanks for explaining the procedure and I hope you are feeling better every day.
Jacqui - @TradesofJacqui says
Wow. When I say I have varicose veins, they are just visible on my skin, but not bumpy like what your’s were. The after pics? Fantastic! I’m so glad it worked out for you and that you are well on the road to recovery! ((HUGS))
Paula Schuck says
I’m so glad it worked out for you! Varicose veins are more than unsightly, they are terribly painful! I have a friend who is just miserable with them.
One of my friend’s wants to do this when she get better coverage. Looks like you got through without any problems! Keep us updated on your recovery.
Glad to hear this surgery worked out for you. You are the third person that I know to say it was worth it.
I never knew that they actually take the veins out. I mean it makes sense, but I guess I never thought of it before. I’m glad you are happy with it and it does look great.
I’ve heard it’s pretty painful after the procedure, but it looks great already! I had no idea the effects were so immediate!
Wow, that looks like it could have hurt. I hope this helps you out in moving forward and the veins are better. I haven’t ever heard of someone getting this type of surgery done.
Vera Sweeney says
Looks like you had amazing results!! I couldn’t imagine how painful those must have been for you!!
I can imagine how painful this had to have been for you. I am glad that you are doing better and based on your pictures it looks like everything is going to heal up really well.
Liz Mays says
Oh wow, the surgeons did a really nice job. I’m glad the recovery has been bearable. It sounds like it’s all starting to pay off.
Pam Wattenbarger says
Glad the recovery wasn’t too bad and you were able to tough it out on Aleve. I bet it will feel much better once it’s totally healed up! Varicose veins are no fun.
wow! i can’t say i’ve ever spoken to someone who has gone through this process, but everything looks like it’s healing well! glad it wasn’t too awful to go through!
I am so glad that everything is turning out ok! I can’t wait to see how everything turns out when it’s all healed up nicely! I think it’s awesome that you would put this out there because I know a lot of people are curious about this procedure!
I have been lucky enough to not have issues with varicose veins. However I love that there are so many options to keep us happy and comfortable!
When I read your post the other day I was curious what it all looked like! That looks so painful the after. I’m glad you got it done and its going to be so awesome when its all good and healed!
Kendall Rayburn says
I’ve never had this surgery, but I think I will need it in the future. Varicose veins run in my family. Thanks for being so open!
Mimi Green says
This was so fascinating for me, I have one quarter size spot where my veins stick out. I’ve got this pretty brown so it isn’t as obvious but I would like it gone. I fear that it isn’t enough to warrant surgery.
Glad you are on your way to a full recovery. You will be in shorts all winter just to show off your new legs. lol
Chrishelle Ebner says
I am glad your procedure and recovery went well. Most people don’t understand that VV’s are not just unsightly but very painful.