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This new minimally invasive procedure eliminates unsightly varicose veins and has replaced vein stripping. Under local anesthesia and ultrasound guidance, our board-certified vascular surgeons will insert a FDA approved thin laser fiber into the varicose vein. The vein is closed via laser therapy, eliminating the need for its actual removal
The in-office, laser ablation procedure takes approximately 45 minutes, and the patient may immediately resume normal activities. Compression stockings are required to be worn following the procedure. This procedure has proven high long-term success rates, low complication rates, and rapid recovery.
How successful is laser ablation?
Results have been extremely favorable and success rates are equal to those associated with the surgical ligation and stripping of veins. Most patients require no additional treatment. However, a small percentage of patients may require additional therapy such as sclerotherapy.
What are the side effects?
As with any medical procedure, side effects may occur. However, minimal side effects have been documented with this procedure. Bruising and minor soreness can be expected and can be treated with over-the-counter pain relievers. A small percentage of patients have experienced temporary numbness in the treated area of the leg.
The VNUS Radiofrequency (RF) therapy is a minimally invasive alternative to traditional vein stripping. It’s done by inserting a very small tube, called a catheter, into the vein and delivering radiofrequency energy to the vein wall. This causes the vein to shrink, collapse and seal shut. Once it’s sealed, the healthy veins take over and redirect blood-flow back toward the heart. The VNUS procedure is a minimally invasive treatment alternative with less pain and less bruising when compared to traditional vein stripping surgery.
- Minimally Invasive Outpatient Procedure
- Clinically Proven Less Post-Operative Pain
- Excellent Clinical Outcomes
- Aesthetically Appealing
The radiofrequency procedure can be performed under local anesthesia in the physician’s office. Patients have reported little, if any, pain during the procedure, and most return to normal activity within a day. Some common side effects include temporary tenderness and numbness. You can expect a noticeable improvement within 1 to 2 weeks, with good cosmetic outcomes and little to no scarring.
This minimally invasive procedure is used to treat spider veins. A solution of various concentrations, called tetradechol, is injected into the vein. This procedure varies in time depending on the size of the veins. This procedure takes approximately 30 minutes, and requires only the wearing of support hose or stockings for several days following the treatment to optimize its effects. The number of treatments necessary varies based on the number of veins and their size. For the best results, sclerotherapy treatments are usually scheduled four to six weeks apart.
How successful is sclerotherapy?
Most patients have satisfactory results following their treatment plan. Some patients may notice that their legs look worse before they look better. This is common. Positive results are usually visible within 4 weeks following the first treatment.
What are the side effects?
As with any procedure, there is always the possibility of side effects. Some of the most common side effects include:
Tenderness – the veins may be tender to the touch after treatment and an uncomfortable sensation may run along the course of the vein. This discomfort is usually temporary.
Some patients complain of an itchy sensation after treatment.
Firmness in the treated area can occur and is minimized by the use of support hose.
Trapped blood may cause a discoloration, although this may leave hyperpigmentation up to one year.
Transient Hyperpigmentation – Approximately 20% of patients who undergo sclerotherapy notice discoloration after treatment. This usually fades in several months. There is a 1% chance of hyperpigmentation continuing after one year.
Patients frequently notice a brown discoloration, which fades in a couple of months – at most within a year.
Prior to the introduction of micro-incision phlebectomy, the removal of clusters of varicose veins were performed through larger incisions leaving unsightly scars (former vein ligation and stripping). Today, a specialized device is placed through the incision 1-2 millimeters (less than 1/10th of an inch) completes the procedure. The incisions are so small, usually, not requiring stitches.
Ambulatory phlebectomy is an outpatient procedure usually performed under local anesthesia. The patient can usually return to normal daily routines immediately. However, compression stockings will need to be worn for one or two weeks, minimizes swelling and discomfort and allows for proper healing. Side effects are rare but include paresthesia, bruising and hematoma.
A blood clot in the deep veins of the leg can break free, going through the heart to lodge in the lungs (pulmonary embolism), which can be life threatening. Early treatment with blood thinners greatly reduces that risk.
With passage of weeks and months, the clot sticks to the vein wall and is less likely to break free. The clot is then partially or completely reabsorbed, allowing the blood to drain more freely out of the leg and back up to the heart. However, in up to half of cases, the clot is not completely reabsorbed and turns into scar tissue that prevents the leg veins from draining properly. This is called the post-phlebitic syndrome and over many years can lead to leg swelling, skin thickening, skin darkening (hyperpigmentation) and even skin breakdown to chronic venous wounds (ulcers) that can take months to heal and cause lifelong problems.
Traditional treatment has been long term compression stockings to prevent swelling and slow down skin changes. After ulcers form, aggressive treatments, including compression wraps, dressings and even skin grafts are required for weeks to months. Even after the ulcers heal, stockings must be worn permanently to prevent the ulcers from reoccurring. Venous ulcers are common, making up 30% of all patients who have to be treated at a wound center.
Past attempts to surgically remove scar tissue from veins to open up the blood flow have had poor success and were very invasive. In the last several years, much research and progress has been made with new, endovascular (balloon and stent) treatments to open up blocked veins. If the vein can be opened to allow better blood flow, the swelling and progression of skin changes can be improved, lessening the risk of ulcers and problems in the future.
Facial Spider Veins
Laser treatment for spider veins, named for their spider-web-like appearance, has proven to be highly effective. This non-invasive treatment involves using the heat of the laser to injure the vein, forming scar tissue. The scar tissue closes the vein, which causes it to lose its blood supply and eventually be absorbed by the body. Usually more than one laser treatment is required. For best results, the treatments should be scheduled six to twelve weeks apart.
Laser treatment of spider veins is very effective and safe. In most cases, you can return to your normal daily routine immediately. Side effects are extremely rare, but can include skin burns, skin pigmentation changes.