Varicose vein treatment

What causes varicose veins?

Fast access to vascular consultants and the latest treatments, including

Varicose vein disease is common in adults, with 30% of women and 15% men being affected significantly. It can be hereditory, but the underlying cause is a malfunctioning of the interior valves in the leg’s superficial veins. As the walls of the dysfunctional veins stretch, the vessels lying just beneath the skin become highly visible, taking on a characteristic thick, bluish-purple appearance. Besides the unwanted cosmetic appearance, varicose veins can give rise to a variety of symptoms, ranging from intermittent ache or throbbing discomfort to itching and more severe pain. A proportion of patients left untreated will go on to develop brown discolouration of the skin, especially around the ankles, which can be the forerunner of venous ulceration. 

What treatments are available?

As no two patients with venous disease are alike, Spire Murrayfield Hospital Edinburgh offers a comprehensive treatment approach to varicose veins. The clinical expertise and experience of our consultant vascular surgeons coupled with the highest quality vascular imaging allows us to offer excellent care and treatment whichever treatment is identified as most suitable for you.  


VENEFIT® is a modern, minimally-invasive approach to treating unwanted varicose veins. The procedure is carried out as a day-case under local or general anaesthetic. A consultant vascular surgeon performing Venefit uses a radiofrequency catheter passed up the inside of the affected vein to heat and seal the vein, which collapses and is blocked permanently. Usually the varicose veins are removed at the same time through tiny 1-2mm incisions using a special hook. 

The main advantages of this new technique are that it is minimally-invasive with tiny surgical wounds and carried out as a day-case. What’s more, trials show that less post-operative pain and bruising is reported by Venefit patients than those who underwent traditional surgical stripping. Many patients enjoy a speedy return to normal activity too, some even within just 24 hours. The results over time are very similar to traditional surgery and the cosmetic outcome is excellent.

This treatment is called radiofrequency ablation and is demonstrated by the following illustration:

Traditional treatment

Traditional treatment for varicose veins includes open surgery - an operation designed to remove, or 'strip' the saphenous vein in your legs. This highly effective treatment is carried out under general anaesthesia, but has associated drawbacks, including recovery time, post-operative pain and wound care, all of which can delay your return to normal activities.

Consultant vascular surgeons can also administer ultrasound-guided foam sclerotherapy for the treatment of surface and thread veins. Carried out using local anaesthetic, a solution is injected into the affected veins to seal them, making them disperse.

Appointments at the Varicose Vein Clinic

Our clinic is designed to offer fast access to a consultant vascular surgeon and to identify a treatment journey for your varicose veins that best suits your individual clinical needs.

Prior to undergoing treatment, all patients are assessed clinically by a consultant vascular surgeon. After examination in the out-patient clinic, patients are further assessed with a special kind of ultrasound scan. This identifies which veins are involved, confirms normal function of the leg’s deep veins, and indicates the most appropriate form of treatment.

If you would like to see a consultant vascular surgeon about private varicose or thread vein treatment, ask your GP for a referral to Spire Murrayfield Hospital in Edinburgh.  

For more information about the Varicose Vein Clinic or to make an appointment please contact Customer Services on 0131 316 2507 or make an online enquiry.  

Paying for private treatment      

If your varicose veins are recurrent then a price will be quoted for you following your initial consultant appointment.
                                                                                                                                      From           To 

varicose vein surgery (one leg) £2,000 £2,950
varicose vein surgery (both legs) £2,950 £3,550
varicose vein radiofrequency treatment - Venefit (one leg) £2,800  
varicose vein radiofrequency treatment - Venefit (both legs) £3,300  

Find a treatment, test or scan available at:


Find a consultant

Use one or more of the options below to search for a consultant and link through to view their Spire profile.


Let us help you

fill out this form and we will get back to you:

Please select a hospital

We can call you

Please enter your details below and we will call you back.

What is the aim of your enquiry?

Please select a hospital

If we are unable to reach you by phone, please include your email address so that we can get in touch...

Varicose veins treated with Venefit

Before                                After

Watch our video on the treatment of varicose veins


© Spire Healthcare Group plc (2016)