Endovenous Ablation is one of the latest alternatives to traditional surgical procedures such as vein stripping. This treatment addresses vein disease from the inside of the vein, offering improved results to vein stripping with no risk of general anesthesia, no scarring left on the skin and a less than 5% recurrence rate that is markedly improved compared to vein stripping, and minimal recovery time. Endovenous ablation can be performed through a laser or radio frequency energy, making it easy for the physician to customize treatment to a patient’s specific needs.
Types of Endovenous Ablation:
Endovenous ablation can be performed using two different technologies:
EVLT, is a safe, reliable, and minimally invasive procedure that treats varicose veins. The procedure eliminates the need for venous surgery and is a much safer, more convenient alternative. Your recovery period will be quick, and you should be able to continue with your daily activities immediately.
EVLT is a relatively simple procedure. A small fiber will be inserted into the varicose vein to shine infrared light onto the inside walls of the blood vessel. The unhealthy vein will contract and eventually close. As the vein seals shut, blood is redirected to nearby functioning blood vessels. Eventually, the sealed vein will dissolve and be absorbed into the body. The precise laser technology allows for targeted treatment and minimal pain. The procedure takes a maximum of two hours, and you will be awake the whole time.
EVLT is a safe, reliable alternative to more invasive surgical procedures. The healing process takes 2-3 weeks, during which you will be able to walk normally. Located in the Kansas City area, we will help you decide on the best treatment and recovery plan for your situation.
Radio Frequency Energy
This procedure is also known as radiofrequency ablation. This treatment uses RF energy to heat instead of the laser energy, which is administered in a similar fashion through a narrow catheter in 20 second increments until the entire vein is treated.
The laser or RF energy heats the wall of the affected vein, causing it to seal shut. Blood is rerouted through healthy veins nearby, while the treated vein is gradually eliminated through the body’s natural mechanisms. You should notice improvement in your symptoms immediately after the procedure with little downtime. Your leg will be bandaged for 2 days.
Preparing for your treatment
In order to maximize treatment success of your endovenous ablation treatment, please follow these steps in preparation for your procedure. Please take the time to talk with Dr. Darling and his staff about the procedure and the pre-op and post-op instructions. Please ask us if you have any questions regarding how to wear compression stockings. Report all medications you are currently taking to Dr. Darling and his staff including blood thinning medications. Dr. Darling will give specific advice regarding these medications.
Drink plenty of fluids the day before your procedure and after your procedure. Take a shower the morning of your procedure, avoiding to applying moisturizer or lotion to the leg. Bring you prescribed compression stockings with you. Wear loose, comfortable clothing to your appointment: leave jewelry and other valuables at home. Plan to have someone drive you home after your procedure.
Pre and Post Op Instructions
Do not eat or drink anything 8 hours before the procedure.
Please inform us on the use of anti-coagulants (blood thinners) such as Coumadin, Warfarin, Plavix, Aspirin, Fish oil tablets etc… Continue taking your normal dose of your medication pre and post procedure unless specifically asked to hold medication by Dr. Darling prior to the procedure. These medications usually do not affect the procedure.
If you need anti-anxiety medication prior to the procedure please ask Dr. Darling or the staff regarding this. We wish for you to be comfortable during the procedure.
Wear loose fitting clothing as this will help getting dressed with Ace Bandages on your leg. You will wear shorts or a surgical gown for the procedure.
Wear loose fitting shoes or sandals as your foot will be part of the wrap applied to the leg.
Please bring you prescribed compression stockings with you the day of the procedure.
During the Procedure
You may have IV sedation to make you comfortable during the procedure. You may bring an I-Pod or Walkman to listen to music during the procedure.
When sitting at home, elevate the leg to minimize any swelling. Please take Motrin, Naprosyn or Tylenol as directed by Dr. Darling. Walk for 10-15 minutes every hour the first day after your procedure. If the Ace Bandage feels tight along the back of your knee you may loosen the Ace Bandage.
It is normal for the Ace Bandage to feel moist after the procedure. If you notice any bleeding through the Ace Bandage please place pressure on the area and call Dr. Darling. The following day after your procedure please resume full activity as you normally would. Being active helps the success of the procedure. You should remove the Ace Bandage 48 hours after the procedure and then begin wearing your thigh high compression stockings for 2 weeks.
You should have a follow up appointment in a week to ultrasound the treated leg. Recommendations for treatment of additional veins may occur at this time. Please bring shorts and wear loose fitting clothing for this exam.
It is normal to have some mild bruising in the area of the micro- incision sites for treatment of ropy veins and occasionally local anesthesia.
You may feel a mild “pulling” feeling in the first 1-2 weeks after the procedure. This is normal. If this becomes uncomfortable please notify Dr. Darling for treatment.
Complications Are Rare
The benefits of treating your vein condition far outweigh the risks of continuing to live with this progressive condition. On rare occasions, you can have numbness or tingling in the treated extremity for a short while. Rarely, you can experience superficial phlebitis or even a DVT. Dr. Darling is a Board Certified physician who is able to manage and treat any medical complications you may develop.
Call Us Immediately if you experience the following:
- Unusual tenderness or redness in your leg
- Unusual redness or warmth in the leg
- Unusual swelling in the leg
- Shortness of breath or chest pain
- Any bleeding