The Non-Surgical Endovenous Laser Ablation Procedure utilizes laser energy to achieve proven results without the discomfort and lengthy recovery experienced through the surgical option of ligation and vein stripping. The entire procedure takes about one hour, and depending on the severity of your condition, may be covered by your insurance. (Call your provider for more information.) This page will provide you with a general understanding of varicose veins and introduce you to this minimally invasive, new standard of care for eliminating them. Be sure to ask your doctor if this procedure could be right for you.
Varicose veins can develop through a combination of weakened vein walls and faulty valves. Under a variety of circumstances, normally toned, elastic vein walls can become weak and allow the recirculating blood that should be moving toward your heart to flow backward. One-way valves in these veins – which open and enable blood to flow through on its way upward, then close to stop blood from flowing backward – can also fail to function properly. This allows blood to pool and pressure to build up, which further weakens and subsequently damages the veins, causing them to become twisted, enlarged and painful. Up to 40% of women and 25% of men are affected by this condition – but fortunately, treatment is available.
Simply put, a laser is a highly concentrated beam of light. Medical lasers work by delivering this light energy to the targeted tissue with extreme precision, so as not to affect the surrounding tissue. Lasers have proven their safety and effectiveness through years of use in all types of medical procedures, from eye surgery to dermatology. In the hands of a skilled physician, lasers offer far less risk for complications than conventional surgery.
In laser vein treatment, a thin fiber is inserted into the damaged vein. A laser light is emitted through the fiber, delivering just the right amount of energy. The targeted tissue reacts with the light energy, causing the vein to close and seal shut. The veins that are closed off are superficial veins that handle less than 5% of your blood flow. The blood is automatically routed to other veins.
In less than the time it takes to watch a movie, you can get rid of the source of your varicose veins. The entire procedure typically lasts anywhere from 45 minutes to one hour, and requires only a local anesthetic. Your physician will insert a thin laser fiber into the vein through a very small entry point, and the laser light that emits through this fiber will seal the faulty vein. While you might feel an unfamiliar sensation, it is not painful. This part of the procedure takes literally just a few minutes. Your physician will encourage you to walk immediately after the procedure, and you can resume normal activity the same day (ask your physician when it is safe to resume rigorous activities). Some patients may experience temporary soreness, which can be treated effectively with over-the-counter, non-aspirin pain relievers and should subside within the first five days.
After treatment, the appearance of the abnormal vein is instantly improved with minimal-to-no scarring. There may be some slight swelling and minimal bruising around the treatment site. However, once that subsides, you will see a significant difference in the appearance of your legs. For those patients who don’t experience these small side effects, the results are obvious right away.
Published clinical studies show that the Non-surgical Endovenous Laser Ablation procedure has more than a 95% initial success rate with excellent long term results. Veins that have been treated are very unlikely to become varicose again. Many people experience other vein conditions that may need to be treated with supplementary therapies. Your physician may recommend additional procedures such as micro-phlebectomy and sclerotherapy.
“The day after my procedure, I was active all day and felt fine. My outcome has been terrific!“
“The bruising was gone, the veins were also gone and my legs looked wonderful. I was thrilled with the results and would recommend this to anyone."
“It’s not an uncomfortable procedure; it went very smoothly and seems like you’re in and out within an hour.”
“You have no signs of the veins, no signs at all. They’re gone and that is the best part.”
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171 Town Center Drive, Anniston, Alabama 36205 • Lewis E. Sellers MD
Content on this website is not considered medical advice. Please see a physician before making any medical or lifestyle changes.