Endovenous Laser Ablation (Venacure EVLT) In Fort Worth TX
When is endovenous laser ablation necessary?
Since laser ablation is a minimally invasive procedure with virtually no recovery, just about anyone bothered by varicose veins can have this procedure. Patients considering this treatment should first have tried conservative treatments for varicose veins, such as wearing compression stockings, exercise (particularly involving your legs), weight loss, and elevating your legs while sitting.
Other than the annoying visual appearance of varicose veins, patients typically opt to have this procedure to remove the pain, aching, and burning sensations in their legs and feet. Sitting or standing for long periods can become very uncomfortable. The legs can cramp at night. Even the skin can become scaly, dry, or discolored at the location.
What happens if I don’t treat my varicose veins?
Once they have developed varicose veins will usually worsen with time. This is true even if you make lifestyle changes to control them and to manage the pain. In most cases, these veins are simply unsightly, but they don’t cause long-term medical problems. In some cases, however, varicose veins can lead to ulcers or sores on your legs, blood clots, or chronic inflammation. If any of these symptoms develop, your varicose veins need to be treated and removed.
How do I prepare for endovenous laser ablation?
As with most procedures, you’ll need to detail any medications you’re taking, including herbal supplements, to Dr. Menzies. You’ll list any allergies, especially to local anesthetic and to contrast materials. You’ll need to stop taking aspirin, anti-inflammatory drugs, and blood thinners. That’s about it.
How is an EVLT Procedure Performed?
The procedure is performed in-office and under ultrasound guidance. An endovenous laser ablation, better known as an EVLT, is a minimally invasive procedure used to treat refluxing saphenous and varicose veins. During the procedure, a small sheath(tube) is inserted into the vein through a small skin nick made by the doctor. A thin laser fiber is guided through the sheath until we reach the top of the vein. Once the laser fiber is in place, a local anesthetic is used to numb around the vein and create a buffer to prevent the burning of the surrounding tissue.
After the anesthetic has been administered around the vein, the laser fiber is turned on and slowly pulled out of the vein to ensure proper closure. Almost immediately blood is re-routed out of the unhealthy superficial vein, and other healthy veins pick up the remainder of the blood flow. After the procedure, there will be several small dressings placed along the length of the vein, and a compression sock will be worn for a total of seven days.
Recovery from Venacure EVLT
Following your treatment, we’ll put you in a gradient compression stocking to help reduce bruising and tenderness and to minimize the rare possibility of blood clot formation. The pressure also helps the body start going about the process of absorbing the closed-off vein. This is important for the vein to fully vanish from view. You’ll wear these compression stockings for two weeks.
You can return to normal activities and work immediately. Moving about is important. Pretty much the only thing you shouldn’t do is get on a plane or anything involving prolonged sitting, such as a car trip. You’ll have to avoid long-haul flights for at least 3-4 weeks. Staying active is the best way to avoid the risk of developing blood clots.
Is VenaCure ablation safe?
VenaCure laser ablation at Southwest Vein and Leg Center is very successful and there is a very low risk of complications. There is a rare possibility of deep vein thrombosis/clotting. Nerve damage to surface sensory veins is possible, but these nerves usually return to normal in a few weeks to months.
Although minimally invasive, endovenous laser ablation does have some potential complications, just like all surgical procedures. The chances of issues such as the development of blood clots is low, and the patient needs to weigh the problems associated with untreated varicose veins against the benefits of these procedures.
In endovenous ablation painful?
Dr. Menzies injects local anesthetic at the access point to the vein and along the length of the vein to be treated. This ensures the area will be numb and you won’t feel any pain. You may have a slight sensation of pressure when the catheter is inserted, but this is not painful.
Injection of local anesthetic around the vein is the most uncomfortable part of the procedure because it usually requires multiple injections along the vein.
What are the side effects and complications of endovenous laser ablation?
As with any procedure where the skin is penetrated, there is a slight risk of injection, but this occurs in less than 1 in 1,000 cases. Since the catheter is inside the blood vessel, there is a risk of damage to the blood vessel, bruising or bleeding at the puncture site, and infection. The experience of our team at Southwest Vein and Leg mitigates this risk.
Patients often have some post-procedure bruising and tenderness. Your compression stockings help to ease these effects.
Thrombophlebitis (swelling of the vein) is not uncommon and this can cause pain and tenderness over the treated area. Most patients only need over-the-counter anti-inflammatory medication and ice to handle the pain.
There is an extremely low risk of a pulmonary embolism where a blood clot forms in the vein and can travel to the lungs.
How long after my ELVT Procedure will I See My Results?
Most veins treated by Dr. Menzies are immediately diminished dramatically. The body will scavenge the closed off vein fully, but these treatments immediately reverse the bulging and pain associated with varicose veins. Long-term results are impressive — most veins treated the VenaCure ablation are effectively invisible, even to ultrasound, 12 months after the procedure. There isn’t any scarring, and there is very little, if any, discomfort. The treated vein will not return.
How long does a Venacure EVLT procedure take?
These endovenous laser ablation treatments usually take just 20-30 minutes per leg.
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If you have refluxing saphenous or varicose veins, Southwest Vein & Leg Center can help. Get in touch with us online or call 817.235.0769 to schedule your consultation visit. Still have questions? Our FAQ page may be able to help!