Radiofrequency Closure

The main advantage of radiofrequency ablation is that it is virtually painless.

Before discussing radiofrequency ablation, let’s first briefly review the reasons that varicose veins occur.

Varicose veins are the bulging and unsightly ropey veins on the surface of the skin of the legs. A common question is, “What causes varicose veins?”

The backflow of blood towards your feet – instead of toward your heart – causes the blood to pool in the veins of the legs. Over time, these abnormal veins bulge and enlarge. Eventually, they can become enlarged, tortuous and twisted.

Radiofrequency Ablation of Varicose Veins in a Nutshell

Here is a YouTube video showing how the radiofrequency procedure works.

Radiofrequency ablation of the saphenous veins is performed using only local anesthesia in our inspected IAC (Intersocietal Accreditation Commission) vein office.

The procedure takes approximately 45 minutes or less.

Saphenous vein ablation is usually required when varicose veins are treated. Both radiofrequency and laser are equally effective in closing down the saphenous vein.

They are the two most commonly used techniques used in this country to treat symptomatic varicose veins.

The currently used term for radiofrequency closure of varicose veins is ClosureFAST.

Radiofrequency generators and catheters have continuously evolved and improved since they were FDA approved in 1999.

The whole process is minimally invasive and does not involve any surgery.

It is done in the comfort of the office setting.

Radiofrequency ablation is used to treat and close the great saphenous vein, the small saphenous vein, and the straight side branches of the great saphenous vein.

The great saphenous vein is the longest superficial vein in the body and the most common cause of varicose veins in the legs.

Radiofrequency ablation involves the painless and gentle insertion of a thin catheter into the saphenous vein for most patients who have associated varicose veins.

how it works

How Radiofrequency for the Treatment of Varicose Veins Works

  1. A catheter is inserted into the diseased vein.
  2. The catheter emits radio waves generated by an electrode.
  3.  It heats the affected vein from the inside.
  4. The vein is immediately closed and sealed shut.
  5. Eventually, the diseased vein is absorbed by the body.

The catheter is withdrawn and the healing process begins immediately.

After the vein is closed, the blood supply in the treated leg is improved. Blood is naturally rerouted to healthy veins. Your circulation is improved immediately.

The ClosureFast radiofrequency ablation technique eliminates the need for the painful stripping operation surgery and general anesthesia. After the treatment, patients instantly experience relief of their symptoms.

Normal activities can be resumed right away. It doesn’t disturb your daily routine or lifestyle.

A follow up ultrasound exam is performed to evaluate the treated vein and confirm that there are no complications.

Complications occur in less than one per cent of patients in our experience.

The main advantage of this technique that it is virtually painless. Unlike laser ablation of the saphenous veins, there is much less pain.

The reason is that less heat is generated by radiofrequency so there is less collateral damage.

My Experience with Radiofrequency Closure

There is a faster improvement and recovery with radiofrequency. Anti-inflammatory medications are not usually necessary.

Narcotic pain medications are not required.

Whenever possible, I prefer radiofrequency to close the saphenous veins.

Clinical studies have confirmed my experience.

Five-year results from the European study of multiple centers on radiofrequency thermal ablation of the saphenous veins has been published.

These results were published by Dr. Thomas Proebstile in 2015.

Research and the scientific literature has proven the durability and effectiveness of this time-tested technique.

Having used both laser and radiofrequency ablation of the saphenous vein, my patients have experienced excellent final results with both techniques.

However, in my experience, radiofrequency is superior from the standpoint of patient satisfaction and the immediate improved quality of life after the procedure.

Commercial insurance companies and Medicare cover Venefit radiofrequency ablation closure procedure.

They recognize that it is a cost effective and proven treatment for varicose vein disease.

We accept and participate in the following health insurance plans:


Health America
Health Assurance
Health Plan of Upper Ohio Valley
Medical Mutual
Mon-Valley Health Pla

United Health Care
Western Pennsylvania Electric (WPEE)
All BC/BS plans