As of this time, we are unable to repair or replace venous valves. Hence the definitive treatment of varicose veins involves removing the vein that contains the broken valves. This can be done surgically with stripping and ligation in the operating room, or with EVLT.
Dr. Muasher performs EVLT in the office, under local anesthesia and mild oral sedation. The treatment is completed quickly, and patients can typically return to work in just 1-3 days. This procedure can be combined with microphlebectomy, which involves removing the large varicose veins through tiny incisions (just a few millimeters wide).
The EVLT Procedure: What to Expect
At the time of the initial consultation, you will be given the opportunity to see a video of this procedure, as we find this alleviates a lot of the anxiety of facing the unknown. This FDA-approved treatment closes leaking veins. The treatment process typically involves the following steps:
- The treatment area is numbed with local anesthesia, and the patient is also given a mild oral sedative.
- Using ultrasound imaging, Dr. Muasher guides a small catheter into the vein. The entry point is so small that stitches are not necessary afterwards.
- Once the catheter is properly situated, a laser wire is placed inside it so that Dr. Muasher is able to access the vein.
- Laser energy heats the walls of the vein, triggering the collapse of the damaged vein.
- The procedure usually takes about one hour.
- EVLT may be combined with microphlebectomy to remove remaining large varicose veins.
- The patient goes home immediately after the procedure and should remain active for the remainder of the day. Patients are typically able to return to work and all normal activities in 1-3 days, once any discomfort has subsided. Patients wear compression hose for a prescribed amount of time to help decrease the chance of deep vein thrombosis and add to comfort.
- After EVLT, blood will cease to flow through the treated vein and will use other, healthier veins instead. This improves both the appearance of varicose veins and the accompanying symptoms.
Benefits of Endovenous Laser Therapy
EVLT emerged as an alternative to stripping and ligation. This less invasive treatment option allows for patients to enjoy shorter periods of downtime and far less discomfort, while achieving similar results. Some of the marked advantages of EVLT compared to surgical vein treatments include:
- Minimally invasive, without incisions, stitches or scarring
- Higher success rate than surgery
- Safer than surgery with low risk of complications
- Brief recovery time, with patients resuming most activities the next day
- Covered by many health insurance plans
- Short treatment time, with procedure taking an hour or less
- No general anesthesia necessary
Am I A Candidate for EVLT?
Endovenous laser therapy is appropriate for treating symptomatic great, small and in some cases accessory great saphenous veins reflux.
If the vein in question is twisted, EVLT will not be possible. Patients who are pregnant or have recently been pregnant should wait several months before undergoing the procedure. Those with deep vein thrombosis or who are unable to walk may also not be candidates. Before ruling anything out, schedule an assessment with Dr. Muasher to learn more about your unique needs.