EVLT is a treatment for larger varicose veins that uses the power of laser light. If bulging, twisted varicose veins are ruining the smooth appearance of the skin on the back of your legs, you are not alone. Varicose veins affect 15 to 25 percent of all adults, according to the Society of Interventional Radiology; about half of all people over the age of 50 have varicose veins. Fortunately, our Virginia vein care specialist performs the minimally invasive EVLT procedure in our outpatient clinic so you can have smooth, youthful looking legs again. EVLT is a safe and effective treatment for varicose veins, which is the result of a problem with the circulatory system, known as venous insufficiency. Normally, valves in your veins prevent blood from flowing backwards towards your feet in between heartbeats. These valves can grow weak and lose their ability to shut properly. This allows blood to flow backward, overfilling and expanding your vein like a balloon. As a result, the vein bulges, thickens, becomes elongated and rope-like, visible just below the surface of your skin.
EVLT is an acronym, short for endovenous laser treatment. The word ‘endovenous’ means ‘from within the vein.’ Endovenous laser treatment, then, works by applying laser light to the inside of the vein. Medical lasers are highly concentrated beams of light that can target diseased tissue inside a varicose vein with extreme precision.
Virginia Vein Care Specialist Discusses the EVLT Procedure
EVLT always starts with a thorough examination to determine the cause of the varicose vein and to create a treatment plan. EVLT may be appropriate for you if you have large varicose veins that do not respond to more conservative treatment, including compression stockings and lifestyle changes. Our Virginia vein care specialist administers a local anesthetic into the skin then inserts a thin, flexible catheter into the varicose vein. Our clinician uses ultrasound to guide the catheter to a precise location in the vein and administers more anesthetic to the treatment area. Our clinician applies laser energy to the inside of the vein to seal it shut. The targeted tissue reacts to the laser energy, which causes the varicose vein to close and seal shut. The body reroutes blood supply through nearby healthy veins. In time, the treated vein breaks apart and is absorbed by surrounding tissue. The EVLT procedure takes about one hour, requires only local anesthesia, and involves minimal pain. The procedure does not cause scarring. Most patients enjoy a quick recovery and immediate return to normal activity. Complications are rare. After EVLT, you will compression stockings that prevent blood from pooling in your veins. We recommend that you walk and resume normal activity to help speed the healing process. EVLT effectively treats existing varicose veins but it does not prevent new varicose veins from developing. After treatment, our Virginia vein care specialist can give you tips on how you can reduce your risk for developing varicose veins. For more information on EVLT for varicose veins, make an appointment with our Virginia vein care specialist at Vascular & Interventional Associates by calling 859-286-7333