Endovenous Laser Ablation
Endovenous Laser Ablation for the elimination of varicose veins is the gold-standard in the minimally invasive treatment of varicose veins. EVLA uses laser energy, which is simply 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. In the hands of our skilled physician, EVLA offers far less risk than conventional surgery. You may also learn more about endovenous RF ablation.
How Endovenous Laser Ablation Works
In the laser treatment, a thin fiber is inserted into the damaged vein through a very small entry point in the skin. A controlled laser light is emitted through the fiber. As the fiber is pulled back through the vein, it delivers 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 are superficial veins and blood flow is automatically routing to your healthy veins.
How to Prepare for the EVLA Procedure
Preparation for Endovenus laser ablation is easy and straightforward. Most importantly, let your physician know about any allergies you may have to medications, anesthesia or otherwise. You may also be asked to stop the use of any blood thinning medications and to stop smoking sometime before the procedure.
Please arrive at least 20 minutes before your procedure and wear comfortable clothing. Avoid wearing tight clothes, especially in the treatment area. In case of any short-term lingering effects of the procedure, we suggest that you arrange for someone to drive you home after the procedure.
What to Expect During the EVLA Procedure
The procedure is minimally invasive and requires no general anesthesia. Only local anesthetic is used to numb the area where our physician is working. Dr. Polena will use an ultrasound probe to guide the fine laser fiber to the target vein, administering anesthetic injections the length of the treatment area. The laser is activated as he gently removes the fiber. The heat breaks down the vein and the vein seals over the course of about a week following the procedure. The entire procedure requires 15-30 minutes.
Aftercare Concerns and Considerations
After your procedure you will need to wear compression stockings. You are encouraged to walk immediately after the procedure and can resume normal activities the same day. Both of these reduce the likelihood of developing a blood clot. The risks of an EVLA procedure are relatively low and include infection at the catheter insertion site, damage to blood vessels from the catheter, short term damages to surrounding nerves and swelling in the vein known as thrombophlebitis. While these risks are rare, your doctor will discuss them during your pre-procedure consultation.