Endovenous laser ablation (EVLA) is a minimally-invasive treatment for large varicose veins. It uses ultrasound and laser technology to seal the vein from the inside.
What are varicose veins?
Varicose veins are twisted and enlarged veins near the skin’s surface that typically develop in the legs and ankles. They are caused by weakened valves in the veins. Normally, the valves keep the blood flowing from the extremities to the heart.
When the valves don’t work properly, the blood pools in the legs and increases pressure that causes the veins to become distended and weak.
Varicose veins are usually not serious, but they can indicate deep vein thrombosis, a blood clot in the deeper veins.
If a piece of that blood clot breaks loose and gets into the lungs, the result is a pulmonary embolism that can be fatal.
What does EVLA involve?
An EVLA can be done at the doctor’s office. The doctor will start with a “leg marking” in which he uses ultrasound to visualize and study the treatment area. She will then draw a map of the problem vein and surrounding area on the patient’s skin to serve as a guide during the procedure.
The patient is given a topical numbing cream. The doctor then injects the patient with a local anesthetic while guided by ultrasound. She will then use a catheter to insert a laser fiber into the vein. You can also do acupuncture in NYC The fiber emits pulses of laser energy to seal the vein, which will eventually shrink and shut down.
After removing the fiber, the doctor closes the area with a single stitch. She will wrap the patient’s leg in elastic bandages. The procedure can take two or three hours.
What happens after the procedure?
The patient will wear their elastic bandages until they have their post-op visit. The doctor will then examine the leg that will probably have slight bruising; this will heal in one to three weeks.
Some patients may also feel a tightness in the treatment area; that means the vein is healing and is therefore actually a good sign.
The patient can resume many of their usual activities, but they should not exercise for several days after the procedure.
How does EVLA compare to the standard surgery?
EVLA has a number of advantages over the usual surgery. It has fewer complications, and there is less pain during the recovery. It does not leave scars.
The chief disadvantage is that the catheter cannot be passed through a small or very twisty vein so that EVLA can only be done on the larger veins.
If you’re interested in endovenous laser ablation, contact Fox Vein Experts today to schedule a consultation.