Clinical Outcomes of Radiofrequency Ablation for Unilateral and Bilateral Varicose Veins

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Approximately 20% of varicose vein are bilateral. Patients prefer a simultaneous bilateral procedure instead of 2 separate unilateral procedures. There is currently little evidence comparing bilateral and unilateral varicose vein surgeries.


To report the clinical outcomes of unilateral and bilateral radiofrequency ablation (RFA) for varicose veins.


The authors retrospectively collected data on clinical outcomes of patients who underwent RFA. They investigated clinical, etiologic, anatomic, and pathophysiologic (CEAP) score, venous clinical severity score (VCSS), and quality of life (QoL) score.


Radiofrequency ablation was performed in 546 limbs in 385 patients. Women comprised 60.4% of the patients. The mean age was 52.3 ± 11.6 years (range, 19–84). The occlusion rate after 2 years was 94.5%. Clinical outcomes of CEAP score, VCSS, and QoL scores improved significantly from 2.15 ± 0.45, 2.70 ± 2.04, and 6.91 ± 6.69 at baseline to 2.10 ± 0.32, 0.63 ± 0.04, and 3.38 ± 4.74 at the study end, respectively. The preoperative and postoperative differences in CEAP score for unilateral and bilateral RFA were 0.02 ± 0.21 and 0.13 ± 0.49, respectively (p = .073). Those of VCSS for unilateral and bilateral RFA were 1.87 ± 1.50 and 4.01 ± 2.93, respectively (p < .001).


Good clinical outcomes were shown after RFA with respect to CEAP, VCSS, and QoL scores. The simultaneous bilateral RFA can be performed with effectiveness.

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