Endovenous Laser Vein Treatments
When varicose veins begin to bulge, and are raised above the surface of your skin, the cause may be high pressure due to venous insufficiency in the Saphenous or Perforator Systems of veins below the skin. A diagnostic ultrasound performed here in our office will confirm the diagnosis and necessity for EVLT. You will know the results of your ultrasound and our recommendations for treatment or observation immediately.
An Endovenous Laser Treatment will improve the cosmetic appearance of varicose veins, its main purpose is to treat advanced cases of venous insufficiency characterized by pain, achiness, swelling, itching, skin changes, or ulcers.
What is Endovenous Laser Therapy (EVLT)
Endovenous laser therapy is currently the newest, most effective and least invasive procedure to treat the symptoms of your varicose veins. This is an alternative to traditional stripping of the long saphenous vein that would be the source or the cause of the bulging surface veins and of the symptoms of pain, fatigue, swelling, etc. Using local anesthesia, a thin laser fiber is inserted into the vein through a needle delivering energy to the vein while causing it to collapse and seal shut; thus eliminating the vein and eliminating the cause of the symptoms.
How does the Procedure Work?
Endovenous laser treatment is performed in our office and the entire procedure usually takes less than 30 minutes to complete. The patient is given light IV sedation and a local anesthetic for comfort. The doctor uses an ultrasound machine to guide the sterile laser fiber directly to the vein. Laser energy is distributed to the target vein to destroy it from within, leaving all healthy veins in the surrounding area untouched.
What is the Recovery Like?
Once the procedure is complete, a dressing and compression stocking are applied to reduce swelling and promote healing of the treatment site. Patients are encouraged to walk around after the procedure and most can resume regular activities right away. Any residual bruising or soreness can be effectively treated with over the counter pain medication. The patient will return to our office in seven days so the doctor can evaluate the treatment area.
Are there Risks?
Because endovenous laser treatment is considered a minimally invasive procedure, risks associated with the procedure are relatively small. Some uncommon risks might include:
- Temporary discoloration around the treatment site
- Mild bruising or swelling that usually disappears on its own within a few days
- Tenderness of the skin, which can be treated with over the counter pain medications
- Infection at the incision site
Are Results Permanent?
Endovenous laser treatment is successful in permanently removing varicose veins nearly 100% of the time. However, other veins can become varicose at the same location, resulting in the need for subsequent procedures.
Endovenous laser treatments get rid of unwanted varicose veins with minimal discomfort and downtime all the while yielding successful results. Best of all, EVLT is covered by Medicare and most insurance.
If you are concerned about a recurrence of varicose veins, our staff can give you information about how to lower your risk of experiencing additional varicose veins in the future.
We Perform Endovenous Laser Treatments Everyday
Endovenous Laser Treatment has replaced traditional Vein Stripping by closing down and sealing off unhealthy veins below the skin surface with the use of a laser. Healthy veins then take over, improving the circulation back to the heart. This procedure is performed in our offices and requires no hospitalization or time away from work. It is a very safe and effective procedure.
Usually only local anesthetic is needed so there are no diet or medication restrictions. You are awake during the procedure and rest comfortably on an examination table. The leg being treated is cleansed with a disinfectant soap and sterile drapes are put in place. The local anesthetic is administered to the entire area being treated. An ultrasound is used to guide the doctor in positioning the thin laser fiber into the vein through a micro incision. Once the doctor confirms placement of the fiber by ultrasound, the laser fiber is connected to the laser machine which heats the fiber tip. As the laser fiber is withdrawn, the heat from the laser closes the vein.
After the procedure, a small steri-strip is applied to the micro-incision. There are no stitches. A gauze bandage is placed over the steri-strip and a compression stocking is used for comfort. You will rest on the examination table with your legs elevated for an additional 15 minutes after the procedure. Normal activities may be resumed immediately, and you can drive yourself to and from our office. A follow up ultrasound exam is necessary 5-7 days following the EVLT procedure to make sure the treated vein is healing as it should.