Endovascular Laser Vein Ablation
Endovenous techniques (radiofrequency and laser)
These methods for treating the deeper veins of the legs, called the saphenous veins, have replaced surgery for most patients with severe varicose veins. These techniques can be done in a doctor’s office. The doctor puts a very small tube, called a catheter, into the vein. A small probe is placed through the tube. A device at the tip of the probe heats up the inside of the vein and closes it off. The device can use radiofrequency or laser energy to seal the vein. The procedure can be done using just local anesthesia. You might have slight bruising after treatment. Healthy veins around the closed vein take over the normal flow of blood. The symptoms from the varicose vein improve. Usually, veins on the surface of the skin that are connected to the treated varicose vein will also shrink after treatment. If they don’t, these connected veins can be treated with sclerotherapy or other techniques.
The VenaCure EVLT procedure is safe, fast, and effective. Targeted laser energy is used to seal the vein shut and helps you look and feel better fast.
Treatment in about an hour
Can be performed in the doctor’s office
Up to 98% success rate
Immediate relief of symptoms
Return to normal activity immediately – with little or no pain
No general anesthesia or hospitalization
Typically is covered by insurance
Start enjoying life again, free of pain from varicose veins.
Complications are possible with any medical procedure, however, are rare with thermal ablation. There is a very low incidence of deep venous thrombosis (clot) - (DVT) and infections and skin burns are very rare. Most patients have minor issues such as bruising and discomfort in the thigh. Walking soon after a treatment is encouraged. Tumesecent anesthetic is a very dilute solution of xylocaine, sodium bicarbonate, and epinephrine and in most patients, less than 500 cc is needed. A safe dose is over 3 liters.
True complications after thermal ablation are very rare.
There have been a few reported cases of pulmonary embolism (PE) - (clot to lung), after these procedures. The occurrence is very rare, but if you have chest pain or difficulty breathing after having this procedure, you should immediately go to the emergency room.
Deep Vein Thrombosis (DVT)
DVT is also rare, but a clot may occur in the femoral vein after these procedures. In most cases, these clots are of no clinical significance and go away after a week or two.
The clots are called endovenous heat induced thrombus EHIT). If the clots ar large, your doctor may prescribe an anticoagulant (blood thinner), for a week or two.
Untreated superficial varicosities may clot after thermal ablation because the source of reflux is closed (saphenous vein). Many times this can be prevented by doing a phlebectomy with thermal ablation.
Infection is extremely rare
Pain & Discomfort
Pain and discomfort may occur in some patients and gradually resolve over a week.
Sometimes you may get mild sensory nerve damage. This can occur on the lower medial or lateral side of the lower leg. This occurs because the sensory nerve branch may be very close to the greater saphenous vein or small saphenous vein. With surgical techniques (high ligation/stripping), this occurs much more frequently.
Allergic reactions can occur and are extremely rare with lidocaine which is the medication used for the tumescent anesthesia.
Remember this procedure forms a clot in the treated vein, but is a clot that the laser or radio frequency makes and acts much different from a clot your body makes. All this means, is that this clot does not travel.