Risk factors for saphenous vein recanalization after endovenous radiofrequency ablation

Chiara LOMAZZI, Daniele BISSACCO, Meryl S. LOGAN, Viviana GRASSI, Gabriele PIFFARE TTI, Santi TRIMARCHI, Ruth L. BUSH

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review


INTRODUCTION: Target vein recanalization is defined as the postoperative detection of blood flow in a venous segment previously ablated. It can be occurred after thermal-tumescent procedures, as radiofrequency (RFA ) and endovenous laser (EVLA) ablation techniques. Despite several papers described and analyzed incidence and consequences of recanalization, limited data are published on risk factors for this condition. The aim of this general review is to investigate clinical and instrumental risk factors for great and small saphenous veins recanalization after RFA, indicating their impact in the follow-up period. EVIDENCE ACQUISITION: Articles were obtained through a detailed search of the scientific journal databases (PubMed, Scopus, Web of Science) for those published between January 1, 2011 to December 31, 2020. The term "radiofrequency venous ablation" was combined with "risk factors", "recanalization" and "recurrence", to obtain the first article cluster. EVIDENCE SYNTHESIS: Risk factors analysis for saphenous vein recanalization after ablation is not a well-studied problem. Although several studies have analyzed recanalization patterns and anatomical causes of ablation failure, few and disaggregate data are available regarding clinical preoperative risk factors. BMI and saphenous trunk diameter seem to be the only two recognized characteristics that may affect short and longterm recanalization rate, though CVI status, sex, target vein treatment length and others factors may be taken into account. CONCLUSIONS: Physicians should consider risk factors for recanalization in patient selection and treatment recommendations, but also recognize that not all "ablation failures" are of clinical relevance.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)427-434
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Cardiovascular Surgery
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2021


  • Radiofrequency ablation
  • Risk factors
  • Saphenous vein

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery
  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine


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