In 2000, we developed a percutaneous method of treating incompetent perforator veins (IPV) using ultrasound-guided radiofrequency ablation (RFA), which we termed TRansluminal Occlusion of Perforator (TRLOP).
Objective: To audit the five-year outcome of the TRLOP technique as indicated by the rate of IPV closure on duplex ultrasound (DUS).
Methods: Patients underwent DUS five years post-TRLOP. Experienced vascular technologists documented the presence of IPVs using a two co-ordinate system, blinded to previous results. Results were then compared with preoperative scans. IPVs were classified as: closed; not closed/reopened; or de novo. Closed IPVs were defined as the absence of any IPV at or within 5 cm of a previous IPV in the vertical and horizontal plane. Any IPVs found outside the delineated area were defined as de novo IPVs.
Results: Of 67 patients invited, 37 attended DUS (55% participation rate; men to women ratio of 14:23, age 40-84; mean 64). Preoperative clinical, aetiological, anatomical and pathological classification: C2, 36.2%; C3, 27.6%; C4, 34.5%; C6, 1.7%. From 125 IPVs analysed, 101 were closed (81%), 24 were not closed/reopened (19%) and 14 de novo IPVs were found.
Discussion: Despite these results representing our learning curve for the procedure, we found TRLOP to be an effective treatment for IPVs. The closure rates described are comparable with the published clinical series data for subfascial endoscopic perforator surgery.