What is a surgical bypass for venous disease?

A surgical bypass reroutes blood flow around a blocked vein by creating a new pathway for blood flow using a graft.

Why is this procedure performed? Why do I need this procedure?

In healthy veins, there is continuous flow of blood from the limbs back toward the heart. Venous insufficiency can occur when forward flow through the veins is obstructed, as in the case of a blood clot. In some patients who have a blood clot, the clot dissolves over time and causes no problems.

In some people, however, scar tissue forms at the site of the clot and causes a blockage in the vein preventing blood flow through it. In some instances, surgery is necessary to bypass this blockage. Surgery is typically reserved for patients who have severe venous insufficiency demonstrated by a painful swollen leg with ulcerations or wounds.

Each patient is evaluated, and treatment will be individualized for the patient’s circumstances.

Where is the procedure performed and who performs this procedure?

A surgical bypass is performed in the hospital setting by a vascular surgeon.

How do I find out if I am a candidate for this procedure?

To find out if you are a candidate for this procedure, please call the Vascular Surgery Department at 216.444.4508 or 800.223.2273 ext. 4-4508.

Last reviewed by a Cleveland Clinic medical professional on 05/10/2019.

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