Assessment of the Quality of Life in Patients with Varicose Veins for Evaluation of Treatment Effect
BACKGROUND: Varicose veins are the most common venous condition of the lower extremities. Treatment for varicose veins varies from surgery to minimally invasive techniques such as radiofrequency endovenous occlusion (RFEO), ambulatory phlebectomy (AP), sclerotherapy and endovenous laser treatment (EVLT). However, there is no method to assess the quality of life (QOL) of patients with varicose veins and the effect of treatment on the QOL. OBJECTIVE: The purpose of this study was to assess the QOL of patients with varicose veins and to evaluate the effect of treatment on the QOL. METHOD: A total of 72 patients with varicose veins were interviewed with the Aberdeen varicose vein questionnaire (AVVQ), was asked 25 questions relating to the symptoms and concerns of their condition. Follow-up was done with questionnaires again, 8 weeks after treatment. RESULTS: The results obtained are summarized as follows: 1. Of the 32 patients the distribution of age was 40-49 years of age (37.5%), followed by 50-59 years of age (27.8%) and 30-39 years of age (19.4%). The mean age was 47.7 years old. 2. 30 patients (41.8%) had suffered with varicose veins for less than 5 years, and 24 patients (33.3%) for 6-10 years. 3. According to the CEAP classification, the most common type of varicose vein was the C1AEPAS (31.9%). 4. Treatment method of varicose veins were sclerotherapy in 60 patients (83.3%), AP in 10 patients (13.9%), and RFEO in 2 patients (2.8%). 5. AVVQ scores correlated with symptoms and concern scores, and also with the clinical grade. 6. After treatment, AVVQ scores demonstrated a highly significant increase. CONCLUSION: This study confirms that varicose veins have a significant impact on the overall QOL, and that QOL shows a significant improvement after treatment. Therefore, assessment of QOL in patients with varicose veins can be a valid measure for the evaluation of treatment effect.
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