How you prepare

By Mayo Clinic Staff

Before the procedure, your doctor performs a physical exam and gathers your medical history.

Physical examination

Your doctor will:

  • Evaluate your involved veins
  • Check for any underlying blood vessel disease

Medical history

Your doctor will want to know your medical history, including asking about any:

  • Recent illnesses or existing medical conditions, such as a heart condition
  • Medications or supplements you take, especially aspirin, nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), blood thinners or antibiotics
  • Allergies
  • Smoking or oral contraceptive use, as these can increase your risk of blood clots
  • Previous treatment for varicose veins and the results of the treatment

If you take aspirin, NSAIDs or blood thinners, your doctor may instruct you on how to stop taking the medication for a certain amount of time before the procedure, to reduce the chances of bleeding. Your doctor may also advise you on your use of antibiotics and oral contraceptives.

The day before

For 24 hours before the procedure, avoid shaving or applying any lotion to your legs. Wear loose, comfortable clothing to your appointment. You might even consider wearing a pair of shorts so that your legs are exposed.

Jan. 22, 2013