EndoVenous Laser Treatment (EVLT)
Endovenous Laser Treatment(EVLT) was pioneered by Interventional Radiologists, this procedure was created to address major varicose vein issues at the source. Reflux within the great saphenous vein leads to pooling, creating visible varicose veins. By closing the great saphenous vein, the twisted and varicosed branch veins, which are close to the skin, shrink and improve in appearance. EVLT uses laser energy, which is simply a highly concentrated beam of light. Medical lasers work by delivering this light energy to the targeted vein with extreme precision, so as not to affect the surrounding tissue. Once the diseased vein is closed, other healthy veins take over to carry blood from the leg, re-establishing normal flow. By addressing the underlying problem, this procedure has great long-term outcomes. Lasers offer far less risk for complications than conventional surgery.
What to Expect
No prep is needed before the procedure.
After applying local anesthesia, the doctor uses imaging to guide a small catheter into the start of main affected vein. The treatment takes less than an hour and provides immediate relief of symptoms.
Patients receiving this treatment on their right leg should have someone drive them home after their procedure. No scars or stitches – because the procedure does not require a surgical incision, just a nick in the skin, about the size of a pencil tip. Immediate return to normal activity with little or no pain. There may be minor soreness or bruising, which can be treated with over-the-counter pain relievers. Patients may feel a delayed tightness (or “pulling” sensation) four to seven days after laser treatment which is normal and expected following a successful treatment.
Will insurance cover it?
Many insurance carriers cover the vein ablation treatment, based on medical necessity for symptom relief.
Is loss of this vein a problem?
No. There are many veins in the leg and after treatment the blood in the faulty veins will be diverted to normal veins with functional valves. The resulting increase in circulation will significantly relieve symptoms and improve appearance.