Objectives: to assess the outcome of a conservative and haemodynamic method for insufficient veins on an ambulatory basis (French acronym, "CHIVA") with preservation of the greater saphenous vein (GSV) for treatment of primary varicose veins.
Methods: duplex incompetence of the sapheno-femoral junction (SFJ) and the GSV trunk, with the re-entry perforating point located on a GSV tributary was demonstrated in 58 patients with varices (58 limbs). The re-entry point was defined as the perforator, whose compression of the superficial vein above its opening eliminates reflux in the GSV. Duplex scanning was performed preoperatively and at 7 days, and patients were followed prospectively at 1, 3, 6, 12, 24, and 36 months after CHIVA. Operation consisted in flush ligation and division from the GSV of the tributary containing the re-entry perforating vein (no additional high ligation is included). If reflux returned, SFJ interruption was performed in a second surgical procedure.
Results: the GSV diameter showed an average reduction from 6.6 to 3.9 mm 36 months after surgery. Reflux in the GSV system was demonstrated in all but five (8%) patients. Of the 53 patients with recurrent reflux, 46 underwent SFJ interruption.
Conclusions: elimination of reflux in the GSV after the interruption of insufficient collaterals is only temporary.