Age is not a barrier to good outcomes after varicose vein procedures

Academic Article


  • Background The Vascular Quality Initiative (VQI) Varicose Vein Registry (VVR) represents a patient-centered database launched in January 2015. Previous work describing overall trends and outcomes of varicose vein procedures across the United States demonstrates a benefit from these procedures. The existing gaps in evidence to support current and future Medicare coverage of varicose vein procedures necessitate further description of clinical outcomes in patients ≥65 years old compared with the population <65 years old. Methods This study analyzed prospectively captured anatomic, procedural, and outcome data for all patients in a national cohort of all VQI VVR-participating centers. The VQI VVR database was queried for all patients undergoing varicose vein procedures between January 2015 and July 2016. Preprocedural and postprocedural Clinical, Etiology, Anatomy, and Pathophysiology (CEAP) classification, Venous Clinical Severity Score (VCSS), and patient-reported outcomes (PROs) were compared between patients <65 years and ≥65 years old. Univariate descriptive statistics of demographic and procedural data were performed. Student t-tests were then performed on change in CEAP classification, VCSS score, and PROs (heaviness, achiness, throbbing, swelling, itching, appearance, and impact on work) for each group. Results There were 4841 varicose vein procedures performed from January 2015 to May 2016. There were 3441 procedures performed in 2691 patients (3631 limbs) in the group <65 years old and 1400 procedures performed in 1068 patients (1467 limbs) in the group ≥65 years old. Truncal veins alone were the most common veins treated in both groups. The majority of patients were white and female in both groups. Most of the demographic characteristics were clinically similar (although statistically different) in both groups with the exception of a higher body mass index in the group <65 years old and a history of bilateral varicose vein treatment, and anticoagulation was more common among patients ≥65 years old. Patients in both groups experienced statistically significant improvement in VCSS, PROs, and CEAP class. There was no difference in overall complications between age groups. Conclusions All patients demonstrated an associated improvement in both clinical outcomes (CEAP class, VCSS) and PROs. There was no significant difference in the improvement in CEAP class and VCSS between patients younger and older than 65 years, although the younger population reported greater improvement in PROs. Given these findings, patients older than 65 years appear to benefit from varicose vein procedures and should not be denied interventions on their varicose veins and venous insufficiency on the basis of their age only.
  • Authors

    Digital Object Identifier (doi)

    Author List

  • Sutzko DC; Andraska EA; Obi AT; Sadek M; Kabnick LS; Wakefield TW; Osborne NH
  • Start Page

  • 647
  • End Page

  • 657.e1
  • Volume

  • 5
  • Issue

  • 5