Tuesday, 10 March 2009

10 year Anniversary of Keyhole Surgery for Varicose Veins in the UK

On the 12th March 1999, Judy Holdstock (chief vascular technologist at The Whiteley Clinic) and I performed the first VNUS Closure operation in the UK.

It was the first pinhole surgery operation for varicose veins in the UK - although the media have now started calling these sorts of operations "Keyhole" surgery operations for varicose veins. By doing this operation, we introduced this new sort of surgery into the UK.

So on Thursday, it will be our 10 year anniversary. In the last 10 years, we have developed the procedures and invented new techniques - such as our TRLOP technique - TRans-Luminal Occlusion of Perforating veins, won prizes and published our research.

Some of our work that should have changed the way veins are treated includes our research - published in July 2007 - that shows that the old "tie and stripping" of veins allows veins to grow back again. When compared to our results using VNUS (radiofrequency) or EVLA (Laser), none of the veins treated over the last 10 years has grown back and only one in 5,000 has opened again. in this one case, we did not stick to our Whiteley Clinic protocol and too little energy was used to close the vein.

Last year, several reports appeared in the press including some videos on TV, sowing some new keyhole surgery being "pioneered" at a London teaching hospital - your can still find one of these videos on the Internet. They show a surgeon using a technique called VNUS Closure FAST to treat a patient with varicose veins under local anaesthetic.
Unfortunately - they did not mention that the first VNUS Closure FAST in the UK was performed by Mark Whiteley and that the surgeon featured had previously undergone training at The Whiteley Clinic and had worked in a Whiteley Clinic franchise in Harley Street in 2008. The "pioneering" surgery had been going on at The Whiteley Clinic (as it still is) rather than the featured teaching hospital.

So today we took an advertorial in The Daily Mail in celebration of our 10 years - and to help people understand that not only were we the first to introduce these techniques to the UK - but we have continued to develop these techniques and introduce others, to make sure we offer our patients the very best results available from vein surgery.


  1. sylvester libisz29 April 2009 at 12:20

    Where can I do the course in the laser sweat ablation.I am a Swedish dentist working now and then in UK.

    Tanks for answer dr Libisz
    my e-mail is

  2. We will be running courses in the near future - at the moment there are a few refinements still needed for the technique.



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