Does Endovenous Laser Ablation Get Rid of Varicose Veins? - 1

Updated on: August 18, 2014

Varicose veins are a problematic condition for individuals in Surrey, British Columbia and around the country. Patients who are suffering from this condition often seek relief through various minimally-invasive options available in the field. One such treatment that is available at many clinics and facilities in the area is endovenous laser ablation, which utilizes laser energy to destroy varicose veins from the inside. Patients who are interested in this treatment are encouraged to speak with a medical professional in the Surrey area to help determine if this treatment is right for them.

This procedure is performed in a doctor's office or clinic, and begins with the skin over the treatment area being anesthetized with a topical anesthetic. Protective eye goggles should be worn to guard against unplanned exposure to the laser light. A laser fiber is then inserted into the faulty vein and ultrasound technology is used to verify its location. The fiber is then slowly heated using low energy, which damages the vein walls and causes them to shrink and eventually close completely. With the vein unable to carry blood, it becomes fibrosed. Other veins in the area will carry out blood flow once the vein is closed.

Each procedure takes about 30 minutes to an hour to complete, and a compression bandage is applied to the treatment area afterwards and should be worn for about a week. Patients may return home after about an hour at the facility. There are no scars left behind and this procedure is associated with just minimal postoperative pain. Patients should walk after the procedure and resume their normal activities, but should consult a vein specialist in the Surrey area for specific recovery guidelines. A follow up appointment may be set for about a week after the treatment to check on the progress of the procedure.

One of the more common questions associated with this procedure is whether removing the greater saphenous vein is harmful. As long as the greater saphenous vein is thick and thrombosed, in which case it may be detrimental to circulation, its removal is not harmful. In fact, removing it may actually improve blood flow. Normal, healthy greater saphenous veins should not be removed, however, in case it is needed for future open heart surgery.

As with just about any medical procedure, there are certain risks and complications associated with endovenous laser ablation. These may include mild numbness around the thigh, pulling sensation, phlebitis, deep vein thrombosis or infection at the incision site. Bruising is common following endovenous laser ablation, although this is typically mild and resolves within about a week. Other complications that may be associated with the incorrect application of this treatment are best avoided by choosing an experienced vein specialist to perform the procedure.

If preformed for a symptomatic patient, endovenous laser ablation may be covered by medical insurance. A trial of support or compression stockings may be required before the procedure, however, to determine if treatment is necessary. Speak with a medical professional in the area for further information.

Learn more about endovenous laser ablation in Surrey, British Columbia.

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