What happens during laser varicose vein treatment?
Before the procedure begins, your leg will be cleansed, prepped and marked. Next, we’ll use tumescent (a local anesthetic solution) to numb all along & around the varicose vein that we’re treating. Using tumescent numbing not only makes the procedure more comfortable for you, it also protects the tissue surrounding the vein during treatment. After numbing, we’ll use ultrasound as a guide for creating a small entry point (think of this as a tiny tunnel) directly into the vein, which provides access for the laser fiber. Then the laser fiber is guided along the vein, again using ultrasound, until it is positioned just below the junction where the blood flow problems are originating. The laser is then activated and slowly pulled back out, delivering thermal energy along the length of the vein. As a result, the walls of the vein contract and close, causing the blood to be re-routed to other healthy veins in your leg.
What are the possible side effects from EVLT?
Possible side effects or complications include discomfort, bruising, inflammation, and/or temporary numbness. The development of more serious complications, such as infection, bleeding, nerve damage and/or blood clots, are extremely rare with this procedure.
What should I expect after endovenous laser ablation treatment?
Immediately after your procedure, we’ll encourage you to get up and walk if possible. We’ll also give you post-treatment instructions which will reduce your downtime and your risk of complications. You will have to avoid heavy lifting, strenuous exercise and long periods of sitting/standing in the weeks following treatment. Compression hose are also an important part of recovery and your compliance with wearing them is critical to the outcome! Generally speaking, the healing process is well-tolerated and most patients are able to return to their normal daily activities shortly after having this procedure.
How much does EVLT cost?
Fortunately, endovenous laser ablation is covered by the majority of health insurance plans. Our vein team staff will help you through insurance verification for the procedure and we’re prepared to answer your questions about the process. Of course, there are hundreds of insurance companies and plans and they all have differences in coverage – and in some cases they may not cover EVLT. Should this be the case, we’ll be glad to discuss alternative payment options for your procedure.