Varicose Veins Treatment: How Endovenous Ablation Works, Its Benefits and Risks

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Varicose Veins Treatment: How Endovenous Ablation Works, Its Benefits and Risks

On average, over 30% of the adult populace is affected by varicose veins. The abnormally twisted, dilated, and large veins are often seen in the legs and thighs. The veins bulge and rise above your skin’s surface, creating an unsightly view, and could also be accompanied by other uncomfortable symptoms. Tomball varicose veins occur when blood pools due to weak valves and vein walls. In some cases, seeking treatment is solely for cosmetic purposes. In others, you could need treatment due to concerns including:

  • Phlebitis (painful veins swelling)
  • Skin sores/irritation
  • Fatigue/heaviness in the legs
  • Skin discoloration
  • Aching/throbbing pain, among other concerns affecting the quality of your life

Your doctor may recommend endovenous ablation when seeking varicose veins treatment to ease such symptoms. It is a minimally invasive procedure that cauterizes and closes the abnormal veins leading to varicose veins. When they are destroyed, they are absorbed by your body, with the blood being rerouted to other healthy veins.

Preparing for the procedure

Your doctor will consider your medical history as you prepare for the procedure. This includes preexisting medical concerns, active medications, and supplements. An allergy, especially to general/local anesthesia, is also a significant consideration. Your doctor may require you to stop taking certain medications before the procedure, like:

  • Blood thinners
  • Aspirin
  • Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs

How the procedure works

The procedure includes a small incision where the doctor will insert a catheter (thin tube) into the vein. The doctor uses ultrasound guidance to position the catheter within the abnormal vein. They use the catheter to insert the electrode/fiber. When in position, the doctor exposes the electrode/fiber tip by carefully pulling the catheter back, sending energy into the abnormal vein. The energy (laser or radiofrequency) damages the tissue inside the vein. This causes the vein to close and turn into scar tissue that your body absorbs.

After the procedure, you may return to normal activities following your doctor’s recommendations. Follow-up checks, including ultrasound, are necessary. This is to assess the treatment to ensure there are no unwanted results. Within a reasonable period, usually within a week, the treated vein will have closed. You might also need additional treatments like phlebectomy or sclerotherapy for the associated veins.

The benefits

The minimally invasive procedure is safe and free from complications. There is no surgical incision, meaning you will not be left with a huge scar. A scar can beat the cosmetic logic if you want to deal with varicose veins’ unpleasant symptoms and spot a smooth look. The small incision also means you will not need stitches or deal with significant pain during the recovery process. The procedure is effective, with the treated veins becoming invisible even through ultrasound exams within a year.

The risks

Any procedure that penetrates the skin exposes you to the potential of an infection. The catheter insertion has risks, including:

  • Bruising
  • Blood vessels’ damage
  • Bleeding at the puncture spot
  • Infections

Although very rare, the blood clots in the vein can also travel to the lungs, a condition known as pulmonary embolism. Endovenous ablation risks can be reduced if not eliminated when undertaken by an experienced doctor and in a sterile environment.

After the procedure, you are encouraged to walk immediately. Nonetheless, you should avoid strenuous activity involving the legs for two to three weeks. Contact or visit Houston Sinus Surgery today to learn more about varicose veins and how endovenous ablation can help deal with the unpleasant symptoms.

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