3 The procedure
3.1 The procedure is carried out with the patient under general anaesthesia, at the same time as coronary artery bypass grafting. An endoscope is usually inserted through a short incision near the knee, to visualise the subcutaneous plane in which the great saphenous vein lies. Carbon dioxide insufflation may be used to open this space. The vein is mobilised by blunt dissection and its tributaries are clipped and divided before removing the dissected segment of vein. The subcutaneous tunnel may be packed with an antibiotic-soaked swab, which is removed before wound closure. A compression bandage is applied to the leg to minimise haematoma.