"treatment for varicose veins and chronic venous insufficiency"

About: Bromley Healthcare / The Leg Club Bromley Healthcare / Tissue viability nursing Guy's and St Thomas' NHS Foundation Trust

(as the patient),

After suffering from varicose veins following pregnancy in 1966, increasing oedema in the feet and ankles and an unsuccessful vein stripping operation 17 years ago, I was referred to Guys and St. Thomas Vascular Surgery Clinic. The Consultant there referred me to my GP practice, to arrange compression bandaging, to reduce the swelling before fitting compression stockings. I had previously been prescribed compression stocking, but been unable to wear them because of the permanent oedema in my lower legs, (which was causing varicose eczema, and deterioration of the skin).

The Practice Nurse referred me to the local Tissue Viability Nurse, who was able to treat me at the Bromley Leg Club. This club, the only one in London, is part of the network of the Lindsay Leg Club Foundation (www. legclub. org), a charity created to help relieve suffering from leg ulcers and associated conditions. The Leg Club is run by registered Tissue Viability Nurses, employed by the NHS via Bromley Healthcare, a social enterprise consisting of community medical staff previously working for the Bromley NHS Primary Care Trust.

Patients suffering lower leg problems can self -refer, and do not need an appointment. Once a week, they are met by volunteers, who welcome and register them and provide refreshments and assistance as well as fundraise. Patients chat in a friendly atmosphere while waiting to be seen by the nurses. Before treatments are carried out, comprehensive tests are undertaken, including blood tests and doppler scans, to confirm suitability of treatment.

My legs were expertly bandaged up to the knee with several layers of compression bandages, increasing the compression over a 4 week period, which significantly reduced the swelling in the feet and lower leg. This allowed me to be successfully fitted with compression stockings, which will help me to avoid developing leg ulcers and associated conditions in the future.

I would like to thank Gill Harman, my Tissue Viability nurse who runs the clinic, for her kindness, expertise and professionalism, the other clinical staff, and the volunteers who make patients so welcome.

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Response from Amanda Mayo, Head of Integrated Care - Bromley ICN, Operations Directorate, Bromley Healthcare

picture of Amanda Mayo

I have shared your posting with the Tissue Viability Team. They are thrilled to read your posting.

From a personal point of view I think that they so deserve the praise. They work very hard and treat each client as an individual. Their knowledge is second to none and, as you say, they are professional at all times.

Bromley Healthcare are very prourd of them and the service that they offer.

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